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fm NATION'S Book 

" NaI lOFS Sghoois 



J^-E¥KIL DWIGIIT mills, D. D. 

mum muwi imzkmui mm 


Chap Copjmlit No 






Elizabeth Blanchard Cook, A. M., 



*' The common Book of Christendom in the common schools of our 
country. Nothing could be more appropriate."— Dr. Simeon Gilbert. 

"The Bible stands between aggressive power aad organized sel- 
fishness on the one hand, and the great mass of the common people 
on the other."— Henry Ward Beecher. 

" My hope for the perpetu ty of our institutions has rested upon 
Bible mora'ity. ... It is an element on which free government 
may be maintained through all time."— Justice .J. McLean, U. S. 
Supreme Court. 

"Hold fast the Bible as the sheet anchor of your liberties, write 
its precepts in your hea;ts, and practice them in your lives. To 
the influence of this Book are we indebted f jr all true progress 
made in our civilization; and to this we must look as our guide in 
the future."— From Messages to the Children and Youth of the 
United States. President Ulysses S. Grant. 


316 Washington Boulevard. 


^ 2607 

Entered according to Act of Congress in the year 1898. by 
The Chicago Woman's EducationaE Uxion, 
[n the office of the Librarian of Congress at Washington, D. C. 


To ALL WHO IvOVE Children and Country 


is affectionately dedicated by 

The Author. 


Althoug-h the court records may put the title 
of the family residence in the father's name, still 
every member of the household may truly and 
loving-ly say, This is my home; so the Bible, let 
it be reverently said, is as truly the people's 
book, the Nation's Book, and the world's book, 
as it is the book of God, our Father, who, in 
His own way, prepared and g-ave it to us. 

The whole includes the sum of all its parts, 
so all the schools of the individual states of our 
broad land, collectively regarded, are the Nation's 
Schools. Their unity of purpose is indicated, 
emphasized and promoted by the United States 
Government and by the National Educational 

No single interest of the United States merits 
and demands more intelligent, conscientious and 
unceasing care than her schools. The physical, 
mental and moral integrity of every individual, 
community and commonwealth has an influence 
more or less remote upon their value. An ac- 
quaintance with the Nation's Book must necessa- 
rily be made by each generation if the prosperity 


of our country is to be maintained from century to 
century. The tide for the people of the present 
time, in this respect, is rising-; as is well illus- 
trated by the large classes for Bible study in Chi- 
cago, and elsewhere, and in the activity in the 
sale and distribution of Bibles and parts of Bibles 
everywhere. If this tide is to be taken at its 
flood in the interest of true patriotism, the people 
generally must master the Bible. Every aid, 
Mechanical {i. e., the Blackboard and the Stere- 
opticon) Literary and Spiritual, should be chal- 
lenged for the inculcation of Biblical thought and 
precept. Selections appropriate for recitation on 
special occasions taken from the Introduction, 
Tributes and Testimonies in this book will be 
eloquent and freighted with profound wisdom. 

With gratitude and pleasure the thanks of the 
Educational Union are returned to the many people 
of the many classes who in many ways have con- 
tributed to the value of this book. Also, of in- 
debtedness to books, papers and addresses relating 
to the subject of Bible reading in schools, acknowl- 
edgment is hereby made. 

To aid in the beautiful work of guarding and 
extending the proper use of the Bible in our Glo- 
rious Educational System this volume is cordially 
presented to the people of the United States. 



Preface . . . . .5-6 

Introduction .... 9-13 

I. The Nation's Boole .... 13-16 

II. The Nation's Book in the Nation's Schools 16-19 

III. Specific Reports from School Officers N. Atlantic States 20-37 

IV. Specific Reports from South Atlantic States . 38-46 
V. Specific Reports from South C\mtral States 47-50 

VI. Specific Reports from North Central States 51-71 

VII. Specific Reports from The Western States 72-77 

VIII. Tlie Nation's Book and Ideal Citizenship— The Bible. 

Music and Art . . 78-80 

IX. The Bible as Literature— A. C. Sherwood, C.W. Shepard- 

son, Dr. Philip Schaff 81-86 

X. The Moral and Religious Value to the State of the Bible 86-95 

XI. Questions Considered. I. How should opponents of Bi- 
ble Reading in Schools be treated? 2. Is Bible Read- 
ing, without note or comment, Sectarian Instruction? 
3. Is tlie Bible the same in all Versions? 4. Should the 
Sacred Books of all nations be taught in connection 
with our Nation's Book in the Schools? 5. Are the 
Decisions of State and Local Courts favorable to Bible 
Reading in Schools? 6. Does Reading the Bible in the ^ 
Schoolroom make it a place of Religious Worship? 
7. When Scriptural Explanations are sought by pupils 
what course should be pursued? 8. Are Roman Cath- 
olics seeking the Expulsion of the Bible from Schools? 
9. What is the wrong of Excluding Bible Reading from 
Schools - - - 96-114 

XII. The Chicago Woman's Educational Union— Eliza Stras- 

burger Miller. Mary Allen West, Frances E. Willard, 
Henry L. Kellogg - - - 115-119 

XIII. Full Text and Description of Petitions. "Readings 

from the Bible, Selected for Schools." Memorial 
prepared by Hon. Chas. C. Bonney. Names signed 
thereto - - - - 120-136 

XIV. Address of Dr. N. H. Axtell Concerning Moral Instruc- 

tion in Schools - - - - 137-146 

XV. Opinions about "Readings from the Bible, Selected for 

Schools" - - - - 147-151 

XVI. The Bible the Book of other Nations. Honored in their 

Schools— M. Guizot, Prof. Stowe, Horace Mann, Lord 
Brougham. Hon. Thos. Wyse, Hon. J. B. Meilleur 152-158 

XVII. The Nation's Book in the Nation's Schools— Summary 159-166 



Behold for Yotxrselves. Rev. E. Blaisdell Wylie 167-168 

Matchless Influence on Human Hearts. Hon. Chas. C. Bonney 168 
Endorement. Dr. N. S. Davis - - 168 

Bible Study. J. Cardinal Gibbons - - 169-171 


A Motion to Return to Paganism. Pres. Chas. A. Blancliard 172 

An accumulation of Great Good to the Nation. Pres. Geo. A. 

Gates .... 173 

Woman's Right. Hon. Geo. R. Glenn . . 172-173 

Religious Education. Bishop N. P. Northrop . 173 

Imperative Necessities. Hon. W. D. May field . 174 

Higher Life. Hon. N. P. Schaeflfer . . 174 

The Bible to be Studied. Dr. Paul Carus . . 174-175 

An Imperial Power for the Nation's Schools. Hon. Mason S. 

Stone .... 175 

The True Idea of God and Duty. Hon. Edward Brooks 175-176 

Teachings Essential in School Instruction. Hon. A. G. Lane 176 

A Promoter of Pure Speech and Character. Hon. Logan D. 

Howell . . .176 

The Uplifting Power of the Sacred Scriptures. Hon. Lyman 

J.Gage . . . .177 

A Lasting Influence. Hon. Wm. P. Lord . 177-178 

In our Schools, In our Homes, In our Hearts. Hon. Louis N. B. 

Anderson . . . .178 

Transformations. Miss Pamela A. Hand. , . 179 

Education of the State. Dr. Lyman Abbott . 179-180 

Moral Instruction through Bible Reading. Hon. Edwin P. 

Seaver .... 180-181 

The World's Book in the World's Schools. Hon. Geo. W. 

Atkinson .... 181-182 

The Highest Class of Patriotic Duties. Hon. Simon Greenleaf 183 
Scripture should be Memorized. Mrs. Julia A. Diilon 183 

The Foundation and Framework of Jurisprudence. Mrs. Eliz- 
abeth A. Reed .183 
Testimony to the Bi(.le. Rev. John Henry Barrows 183-188 
It is Precious, Rev. Tennis S. Hamlin . . 189-191 
It shall Prosper, Holy Bible . . .191 



This Book concerns twenty-five million children 
and youth, and the moral institutions used for 
shaping- their conduct and character. Training- 
of the young in the ethics of social and civic life 
is the imperative of the hour. Motives not alone 
of morality and religion, but of patriotism and 
prudence, demand that instruments be devised for 
teaching them the science of right living-, and 
the art of just, smooth and charitable relations 
with their fellows. Ours is a land whose genius 
and institutions assume a high degree of intel- 
ligence and moral culture. Our fathers have 
achieved vast social treasure — treasure of things, 
fields, factories, warehouses — treasures of ideas, 
schools, churches, libraries, and free institutions. 
To give these riches of civilization over to an 
ignorant and weak generation for wasting- would 
be a crime against our forefathers, and pauperize 
future generations. Our first duty is to make our 
youth too wise to waste, too just to impair this 
treasure, and ambitious to hand it on enriched by 
their own contributions. Free institutions and 


moral illiteracy cannot exist side by side. Illit- 
eracy in morals must cease to be, or free institu- 
tions are doomed. 

No 3'OUtli is fitted to inherit an institution 
whose forehead is not on a level with the inventor 
thereof. To create wealth, social and material, 
requires g-reat intelligence, wise administration 
quite as much. Watt's engine and Jacquard's 
loom incarnate their genius. No man can take 
charge of the loom whose intelligence is not 
equal to the automatic intelligence in the loom, 
plus the brain power equal to all the crises of 
that loom. In like manner our social and politi- 
cal institutions incarnate the genius of an Adams, 
Washington, or Lincoln. No youth is fitted to 
lay hands upon this social mechanism who has 
not carried his brain and conscience up to the 
level of Hamilton and Jeiferson when they in- 
vented their instruments. To give a throbbing 
engine into the hands of an inexpert child is a 
crime. Nor can it ever be right for the state to 
give its forceful tools to youth stupid and unwise 
through the state's neglect. Constitutions may 
make suffrage universal, but it is easier for the 
state to legislate aside the nature of things, or 
lead the Almight}^ to the edge of His universe 


and bow Him out of existence, than to give ig-no- 
rance, weakness and vice the right to go up to 
the judgment seat and through the ballot lever 
determine destiny for multitudes. In founding 
these institutions our fathers assumed that the 
people would see to it that there should never be 
a bod}' of ignorant or untrained youth. But, 
while much is being accomplished in moral train- 
ing, it must be confessed that relative to the ad- 
vance in the creation of wealth — the development 
of intellectual tools, with press, public schools 
and academies — the invention of instruments for 
moral training is far and away behind all others. 
The instruments for the moral training of youth 
are twofold. First, are the common schools — 
jack screws under the sills of the nation, by which 
all the people are slowly being lifted. Our fathers 
founded these schools not alone in the interest of 
wisdom and learning but of ethics and morality. 
Their schools exercised a triple function, to wit: 
trained the child's reason to perceive the truth; 
his taste to admire the beautiful; his moral sense 
to judge between acts right and acts wrong. 
Casting out theology they enthroned ethics. They 
taught the 3'outh how to read and write, and also 
how to carry himself in the home, the market 
place, the forum and the polls. Daniel Webster 


believed with them when he said, "The right of 
the state to punish crime involves the state's duty 
to teach morals." Kthics concern man as man. 
Moral principles are not denominational. They 
are no more ecclesiastical than the principles of 
breathing, or walking or eating or sound think- 
ing. To render the youth's mind keen as a Dam- 
ascus blade, without teaching him how to carry 
his instrument through the crowded street, is to 
work injury toward the child and disaster toward 
his fellows. The three R's are not so vital to the 
child's welfare as the moral principles that teach 
the art of right living. Disobedience to law is 
always slavery. Obedience is liberty. Disobedi- 
ence to the law of fire, water, acid, is death. 
Obedience to the law of color gives the artist's 
skill: to law of eloquence, the orator's power: to 
law of iron, the inventor's engine. Disobedience 
to moral laws means waste, wretchedness. Want 
turns cities into heaps, and renders society a herd. 
Thus the common schools become the real promo- 
ters of civilization — the bulwarks thereof. They 
teach patriotism. They destroy clannishness. 
They unify the races. "The state rests upon a 
tripod — a free school, a free church, a free state." 
When one leg falls the whole structure will come 
crashing down. 

Chapter I. 

The Nation's Book. 

Even' one rejoices that under our Constitution 
there never can be any union of church and state. 
This however does not mean that the National 
g-overnment of our republic is indifferent to the 
moral and religious character of its citizens. Our 
National Book, as well as our National Hymn, Flag- 
and Constitution, is loved by the people. They do 
not substitute a part for the whole (an error of 
superficial or incomplete reasoning-) but appreciate 
the fact that the Bible and the church, or relig-ion 
and the church, are not interchang-eable or synon- 
ymous terms. 

Our government has never been unmindful of the 
great interests of religion, but has, from the begin- 
ning, been in accord with the conviction expressed 
by Washington, that — 

"Religion and moralitj- are indispensable sup- 
ports of political existence and prosperity." 

As everybody knows, among the fathers and 
founders of this republic the Bible was the Book 
of all books. Every family was required, in some 
colonies, to have a copy; and one of the chief mo- 

14 THE nation's book. 

lives for the org-anization of the common schools 
was, that the common people might be enabled to 
read it. This fact of history is well illustrated 
by the action taken by Continental Congress in 
1777, when, in answer to a memorial on the sub- 
ject, a committee was appointed to advise as to 
the printing- of an edition of thirty thousand 
Bibles for popular use. This committee, in view 
of the difficulties of procuring- the necessary mate- 
rial (paper and types), because of the exig-encies 
of the war, reported to Cong-ress the recommen- 
dation, that — 

"The use of the Bible being- so universal, and 
its importance being- so g-reat, the Committee on 
Commerce be directed to import, at the expense 
of Cong-ress, 20,000 Kng-lish Bibles from Holland, 
Scotland or elsewhere," 

The report was adopted, and the importation 

This action, at a time when the need of money 
for carrying on the war was so urgent, shows 
how deeply the conviction that a knowledge of 
Biblical truth was essential to National life and 
health was rooted in the heart of the Nation. 

Again in 1781, when, because of the existence 
of war, English Bibles could not be imported, and 
no opinion could be formed as to how long the 
obstruction might continue, the subject of print- 

THE nation's book. 15 

ing- the Bible was ag-ain presented to Congress. 
It being ascertained that Robert Aitkin of Phila- 
delphia had published an edition of the Bible, a 
resolution was passed by Cong-ress hig-hly approv- 
ing- "the pious and laudable undertaking- of Mr. 
Aitkin, as subservient to the interests of relig-ion, 
and being- satisfied of the care and accuracy of the 
work," the edition was recommended to the people 
of the United States. Thus it is apparent from 
these and similar facts that mig-ht be multiplied 
indefinitely, that the pioneers of our Common- 
wealth knew and cherished its Book — the Bible. 
From such a beg-inning-,- all the way down the 
years of our Nation's history, the Bible has held 
and still holds an honored place in the customs, 
and in the public and private institutions of the 
United States. 

Chapter II. 

The Nation's Book In The Nation's Schools. 

Naturally, from the beg-inning, wherever schools 
were established, the Bible, in an important sense, 
their mother, was used in them as an indispen- 
sable part of the curriculum. 

In 1896 the Chicago Woman's Educational Un- 
ion requested its President to prepare a statistical 
and historical report concerning Bible Reading in 
the Public Schools of the United States. Accord- 
ingly letters of inquiry were sent to th State, 
County and City Superintendents of Schools. The 
questions asked were — 

Whether portions of the Bible were read regu- 
larly in all the schools under their care? 

If not, in part of them? 

If read, for how many years had it been the 

If not, was it formerly read there? 

For how many years? and 

Whether or not there was a rule of the School 
Board on the subject? 

The replies show that with the exception of 

one of the North Central, and five or six of the 

sparsely settled Western States, Bible Reading in 

schools is observed generally throughout the coun- 



try. Among- the long- list of cities miiintainintr 
this custom we mention — 





Ann Arbor, 














New York City, 











N. Y., 




S. C, 

















Terre Haute, 





N. J., 





Lincoln, Neb. 

The original States put the Bible into their 
public schools when org-anized, and throug-h all 
the years since that time it has held a place in 

DELAWARE, the first to ratify the National 
Constitution, reports Bible reading- as well-nig-h or 
quite universal in her schools. 

PENNSYLVANIA, the second, in her printed 
report (1896), states that more than 87 >^ per cent, 
read the Bible in her schools, and that such read- 
ing- has been customary from time immemorial. 

NEW JERSEY, the third, reports that her 
school laws provide for reading- the Bible and 

18 THE NATION'vS book 

repeating- the Lord's prayer, and that the Bible is 
read and has been read in her schools since their 

GKORGIA, the fourth, reports Bible reading- in 
the public schools generally since their beginning-. 
Under her laws the Bible cannot be excluded. 

CONNECTICUT, the fifth, states that in most 
of her schools the Bible is read, and has always 
been read. 

MASSACHUSETTS, the sixth, has not a school 
in which Bible reading is not the custom. It is 
required by State law. 

MARYLAND, the seventh, states that the cus- 
tom of Bible reading is almost universal in her 
public schools. 

SOUTH CAROLINA, the eighth, reports Bible 
reading as optional throughout the State. It is 
required by law in Charleston, and is quite gen- 
eral in all the public schools. 

NEW HAMPSHIRE, the ninth, reports Bible 
reading as general in all her public schools. 

VIRGINIA, the tenth, reports that Bible read- 
ing is established in nearly all her schools, and 
has been since their organization. 

NEW YORK, the eleventh, has Bible reading 
under rule in her chief cities, and it is customary 
in a large proportion of schools throughout the 

IN THE nation's SCHOOLS. 19 

State, and such has been the practice from her 
earliest histor3\ 

NORTH CAROLINA, the twelfth, reports that 
the Bible is held in hig-h esteem in the public 
schools of the State. That it is cherished by her 
people as the national flag- is. 

RHODE ISLAND, the thirteenth and last of 
the orig-inal States to ratify the National Consti- 
tution, has Bible reading- in her schools g-ener- 
alh^ almost universall3^ 

Eight States — Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, New 
Jersey, Georg-ia, Indiana, Iowa, and North and 
South Dakota — honor the Bible by name in their 
State laws for public schools. Bible reading- is 
optional in the remaining- States, with five or six 

Like beg-ets like. A mig-hty book makes a 
mig-hty nation. The Bible reading- era "chang-ed 
the face of England," and has made the Anglo- 
Saxon democracy, in the words of Castelar — 

"The most dignified, most moral, most enlight- 
ened and richest portion of the human race." 

Chapter III. ' 

Spkcific Reports from School Officers. 


In no way can a more vivid sense be secured of 
the fact that the Bible is held in esteem in the 
public schools, than b}'' visiting them and hearin<^^ 
and seeing" the use made of it. The next best 
way is to read the letters from school superin- 
tendents, the laws passed by State and local 
bodies, and the decisions of the courts upon the 

Starting- in Maine, and passing- down the At- 
lantic coast to Florida, then g'oing- West and 
Korth throug-h the South and North central re- 
gions, and down through the Western, the atti- 
tude of the individual States toward Bible read- 
ing in their public schools is reported as follows: 

Hon. W. W. Stetson, State Superintendent of 

Schools, Augusta, Maine: 

"I am very happy to be able to report, that the 
opening exercise, in most of the common schools of 
this State, consists of reading a passage of Scrip- 
ture by the teacher, and repeating the Lord's Prayer 
by the teacher and pupils. This custom is so gen- 


eral that I think it is unnecessary to attempt to col- 
lect any statistics upon this matter in this State." 

Reports from superintendents and school officers 
(six of them count}^ superintendents) from nine of 
the sixteen counties in Maine, received since June 
17, 1896, state that there is Bible reading- in every 

"As soon as the Pilg-rims penetrated the wilds 
of Maine and established schools," the Bible was 
the book essential. Through public spirit and 
respect for the g-overnment, for whose benefit 
public schools are maintained, daily reading- of 
the Bible has been the custom in Maine for more 
than. 270 years. 

The rule for the opening- exercises in the schools 
of Portland, Maine's chief city, is" as follows: 

"Reading- of select portions of Scripture by the 
teacher, and the repeating- of the Lord's Prayer in 
concert by the pupils, shall constitute the opening- 
exercises of the schools." 

This practice of the school teachers in Maine 
is in harmony with the decision of Justice Apple- 
ton, which was concurred in by the entire bench 
of seven members of the Supreme Court of Maine, 
(see 38 Maine, 379). 

The Maine Court says: 

"If the Bible or any particular version of it may 
be excluded from schools, because its teaching-s may 


be opposed to the teaching's of the authorities of any 
church, the same result may ensue as to any other 
book. If any one sect may object, the same right 
must be g-ranted to others. This would g-ive the 
authorities of any sect the right to annul any regu- 
lation of the constituted authorities of the State, as 
to the course of study and the books to be used. It 
is placing the legislation of the State, in the matter 
of education, at once and forever in subordination 
to the decrees and teachings of any and all the sects, 
when their members conscientiously believe such 
teachings. It at once surrenders the power of the 
State to a government not emanating from the peo- 
ple, nor recognized by the constitution. 

"As the child may object to reading any book, 
so it may equally object to hearing it read for the 
same cause, and thus the power of selection of books 
is withdrawn from those to whom the law entrusts 
it, and by the right of negation is transferred to the 
scholars. The right, as claimed, undermines the 
power of the State. It is that the will of the ma- 
jority shall bow to the conscience of the minority, 
or to the conscience of one. 

"Nor is this all; while the laws are made and 
established by those of full age, the right of obstruc- 
tion, of interdiction, is given to any and all children, 
of however so immature age or judgment." 


Hon. Fred Gowing, State Superintendent of 

Schools, Concord, New Hampshire: 

'*T not only do not object to using the actual 
Bible, leaving to the teacher's discretion the selec- 
tion of passages, but encourage it." 

Reports from superintendents or teachers in all 
but one of the counties of New Hampshire are 


received. In all the schools of the State, with a 
very few exceptions, the Bible is read, and has 
been since the schools were iirst established about 

The school law for the larg-est city, Manches- 
ter, is as follows: 

"Sec. 18. The morning* exercises of all the 
schools shall commence with the reading- of the 
Scriptures, followed by the Lord's Prayer." 


Hon. Mason S. Stone, State Superintendent of 

Education, Montpelier, Vt. : 

"We encourag-e Bible reading- in our public 
schools, althoug-h we have no law requiring- it. The 
Bible is read in nearly every school. The Lord's 
Prayer and Bible verses are quite g-enerally recited." 


Hon. Frank A. Hill, Secretary, State Board of 

Education, Boston, Mass. : 

"So far as my knowledg-e, my observation and 
my experience g-o, the schools of Massachusetts read 
selections from the Bible once a day. The repeti- 
tion of the Lord's Prayer is generally used in con- 
nection with the devotional exercises; and the sing-- 
ing- of sacred music, while not universal, is exceed- 
ingly common." 

The enthusiasm with which chairmen of school 
boards and other officers of schools send in their 
affirmative reports, (100 received) shows a deep in- 
terest in the subject. 

24 SPECIFIC rkports 

For 278 years the Bible has been read in the 
schools of Massachusetts. 

The State Law upon this subject is as follows: 

"Bible to be "Sec. 32. The school committee 

read in shall require the daily reading- in 

schools. Sec- the public schools of some portion 

tarian books of the Bible, without written note 

excluded. or oral comment; but they shall not 

1862, 57. require a scholar whose parent or 

1880, 176. g-uardian informs the teacher in 

12 Allen, 127. writing- that he has conscientious 

scruples ag-ainst it, to read from any 

particular version, or to take any 

personal part in the reading; nor 

shall they direct to be purchased or 

used in the public schools, school 

books calculated to favor the tenets 

of any particular sect of Christians. 

"It is the settled policy of the State to require 

the use of the Bible in the public schools, and since 

the passag-e of the act of 1855 there have been but 

few objections made. 

"The duty of the committee is performed if they 
require the Bible to be read by the teachers as a part 
of the morning- devotional service. The law does 
not prescribe, as a rule from which there are to be 
no deviations, that every pupil who may be able to 
read the Bible shall be required to do so. In this 
respect a discretion is vested in the committees. No 
sectarian books are used in the schools." 


Many school committees have local rules, some 
of which we quote below: 


"Morning- exercises in all the schools shall beg-in 
with reading- the Scriptures and the Lord's Prayer." 

"30. The morning- session in all the schools 
shall open with reading- from the Bible." 


" Sec. 45. In each school room the morning- ex - 
crcises shall commence with the reading- of suitable 
selections from the Bible b}' the teacher, to be fol- 
lowed by the audible repetition of the Lord's Praj-er 
by the teacher alone, or by the teacher and pupils in 

" Sec. 46. Good morals being- of the first impor- 
tance to the pupils, and essential to their hig-hest 
prog-ress in useful knowledge, instruction therein 
shall be given in each of the schools, in conformity 
with the provisions of Public Statutes (chap. 44, sec. 
15), and the principles of truth and virtue, faith- 
fully inculcated upon all suitable occasions. 

'' The pupils shall be carefully instructed to avoid 
idleness, profanity, falsehood, deceit and every 
wicked and disgraceful practice; and to conduct 
themselves in an orderly and proper manner; and it 
shall be the duty of the instructors, so far as possi- 
ble, to exercise a general inspection over them in 
these regards, both in school hours and while g'oing 
to and from school." 


Chapter xv., sec. 4, as amended Dec, 1894: 

"Opening Morning exercises: A portion of the 
sacred Scriptures shall be read, without comment, 
to the pupils by the teacher of each school, at the 
opening of the morning session; also a patriotic se- 
lection shall be recited, or a patriotic song shall be 
sung by the school. And the Board recommends 


that the Lord's Prayer shall be repeated by the 
teacher alone, or by the teacher and pupils in con- 


"Sec. 3. The teachers shall open their respect- 
ive schools in the morning- with reading- of the 
Scriptures and the recitation of the Lord's Prayer, 
the opening- exercises not exceeding- ten minutes in 
leng-th. And it is recommended that the afternoon 
services close with sing-ing-." 

These rules vary with varying- conditions. They 
will commend themselves to educators g-enerally. 

In 1642 an ordinance was passed requiring 
"chosen men ... to take account of the ability 
of children to read and understand the principles 
of religion and the capital laws of this country." 

An ordinance establishing- g-rammar schools was 
passed Nov. 11, 1647, which recog-nized Bible read- 
ing- as a chief object to be secured at school. 

More than 100 years later, in 1789, an act was 
passed making- it the duty of instructors to im- 
press upon their pupils — 

"The principles of piety, justice, and a sacred 
regard to truth, love to their country, humanity and 
universal benevolence, sobriety, industry and fru- 
gality, chastity, moderation and temperance, and 
those other virtues which are the ornaments of soci- 
ety, and the basis upon which the repuMican consti- 
tution is structured^ 

According* to the New Kng-land theory of life 

it was absolutely essential that every one, from 


earh' childhood, should be taug-ht to "read and 
understand the Bible, and other g-ood and profit- 
able printed books in the Eng-lish tong-ue." 

This feeling- strengthened with the passing- 
years, and Bible reading- in schools became a 
carefulh' reg-ulated requirement. 

From Boston, down through every city, town 
and villag-e school, the book, recognized by the 
g-overnment as containing- its standard of moral- 
ity, is treated with the respect due to it as such, 

Hon. Thos. B. Stockwell, State Commissioner 

of Public Schools, Providence, R. I., writes: 

"I enclose extracts from the last edition of our 
School Manual, which show very clearly the rela- 
tion of the State to the subject of relig-ious and mor- 
al teaching- in the public schools. Twenty years 
ago I made quite a careful study of the subject, and 
embodied it in my annual report, of which I am able 
to send you a cop3\" 

(The g-reat value of this article has led to the in- 
sertion of a large part of it on the following- pages.) 

"It is my impression that there has not been 
much change since then. If any change it is in the 
direction of less reading of the Bible." 

Mr. Stockwell's report contains the following on 

"While we acknowledge fully the labors of the 
teachers in this branch of their work, we cannot 
also fail to recognize the existence of a lower moral 


tone in the community than formerly prevailed. 
For various reasons, some inseparable from our con- 
dition, and others the result of our own neg-lig-ence, 
we have fallen upon a period when the public mor- 
als are at a low state. In this condition of affairs 
there is devolved upon the schools the g-reater neces- 
sity for lending- all the aid in their power to the 
work of elevation. 

"School of&cers, in their selection of teachers, 
should exercise a wise discretion, and seek for those 
individuals who can be relied on as efficient and 
faithful instructors in virtue. Teachers are called 
upon to throw more devotion into their work, and 
to labor for the education of the heart, as well as of 
the head. They must not be satisfied with keeping- 
the letter of the law, but must live up to its spirit 
with a heartiness that shall carry before it all oppo- 
sition and indifference. 

" The accompan3dng- special report to the General 
Assembly was prepared, as its tenor indicates, in 
response to a resolution passed by that honorable 
body at the May session. I have thoug-ht it best to 
incorporate it in this report, in order that it might 
take a more permanent form— regarding- it as of some 
future value, at least as showing- the present status 
of our schools in reference to this g-reat question. 

"-To the Honor able the General Assembly : 

" I have the honor to present the following- report 
in response to a resolution adopted by your Honor- 
able Body at the May session, 1876, to wit: 

''Resolved (the Senate concurring), That the 
Commissioner of Public Schools be instructed to re- 
port to the General Assembly, at the next January 
session, whether any and what means are used in 
the public schools 'to implant and cultivate in the 
minds of all children therein the principle of moral- 


ity and virtue,' as provided in section 6, chapter 54 
of the General Statutes. 

" The whole section referred to reads as follows: 

' Every teacher shall aim to implant and cultivate 
in the minds of all children committed to his care 
the principles of morality and virtue.' . 

*'Of the means used to secure moral and virtuous 
development we naturally consider the Bible first. 
As a result of my inquiries on the subject, I have 
received information from all but two of the thirty- 
six cities and tov/ns of the State. I find that in ten 
towns the reading- of the Bible is required by a rule 
of the committee; that in five it is simply recom- 
mended by them; that in six either the reading- of 
the Bible or a prayer, g-enerally the Lord's Prayer, 
is required; while in one town ' some moral or relig-/- 
ious exercise' is made obligatory. In the other 
twelve towns no rule or recommendation upon this 
specific subject exists. 

"Passing- from rule to practice I find, from the 
testimony oi the several town superintendents, that 
not only in those towns where there is a specific rule 
or recommendation, but also in all of the others, it 
is almost the universal custom to open the daily ses- 
sion with some form of devotional exercise, of which 
the reading- of the Scriptures forms g-enerally an im- 
portant part and often the whole. . . . 

"It will thus be seen that there are but few 
schools in our State wherein the pupils are not 
brought into daily contact with the Scriptures, the 
fountain of all truth, the source of all virtue, the 
essence of all morality. . 

"The main force to be relied upon for the promo- 
tion of moral culture is not so much a S3^stem of 
ethics, or a well org-anized plan of instruction, as 
the life which the teacher lives before his pupils. 
The most effective means for implanting- the seeds 


of virtue, and inculcating- a sound morality, are 
often the almost unconscious words and acts of the 
sincere and faithful teacher, which are, as it were, 
the spontaneous overflow of his own pure character. 

"In recognition of this truth, and also of the 
consequent responsibility resting- upon them, I am 
g-lad to be able to report, that the school authorities 
of various towns are adopting- more and more strin- 
g-ent rules in reference to the moral qualifications 
of their teachers. I hope that the standard will be 
raised still hig-her, and they shall be soug-ht, for not 
merely the neg-ative g-race of a character without 
reproach, but for the positive virtue of an ag-g-res- 
sive morality." 

The sugg-estion of the State Commissioner, that 
the Massachusetts law might well be followed, we 
hope will lead the General Assembly to adopt it. 
Such action would be an appropriate tribute of 
the State to their faithful State Commissioner, 
who has so acceptably presided over the public 
schools for many years. 

Hon. Charles D. Hine, State Secretary Board of 
Education, Hartford, Conn.: 

*'In most schools of the State the Bible is read, 
or some part of the Bible recited, often it is a por- 
tion of the Psalter. There is however no uniform 

"In most of the best schools the only opening 
exercise is the Lord's Prayer, or some devotional 
exercise with singing. 

"As I have said, however, in most schools the 


Bible is read, and alwa3's has been read. Generally 
there is no objection to it." 

Hartford, Connecticut's largest city, has a rule 
for Bible reading- in schools. 

The early leg-islation of Connecticut is similar 
to, when not identical with, that of Massachu- 

From the summary of the system of Public 

Instruction in Connecticut, at the opening- of the 

18th century, made b}^ Dr. Henry Barnard, notice 

the following: 

" It is an obligation on every parent and guardian 
of children, ' not to suffer so much barbarism in any 
of their families as to have a single child or appren- 
tice unable to read the Holy Word of God, and the 
good law of the colony;' and also 'to bring them up 
to some lawful calling or employment,' under a pen- 
alty for each offence." 


The great metropolis. New York City, has a 
rule requiring Bible reading, a custom which has 
probably been observed upwards of three centuries. 



"All the schools of this city under the jurisdic- 
tion of the Board of Education, shall be opened with 
reading a portion of the Holy Scriptures, without 
note or comment. " 


Further instructions relating to this subject in 
the city are: 

"Sec. 1062. No school shall be entitled to, or 
receive any portion of the school moneys, in which 
the religious doctrines or tenets of any particular 
Christian, or other religious sect, shall be taught, 
inculcated, or practiced; or in which any book or 
books containing compositions favorable or prejudi- 
cial to the particular doctrines or tenets of any par- 
ticular Christian or other religious sect, or which 
shall refuse to permit the visits and examinations 
provided for in this chapter. But nothing herein 
contained shall authorize the Board of Kducation to 
exclude the Holy Scriptures, without note or com- 
ment, or any selections therefrom from any of the 
schools provided for by this chapter." . 

The rule for Brooklyn schools is as follows: 
PART III. Section 5. 

(At the opening of the school.) "A portion of 
the Holy Scriptures shall be read aloud by one of 
the teachers in each depaitment, without note or 

Returns from ninety-four school officers, residing 

in forty-eight of the fifty-nine counties of New 

York, are received. About one-half of them as 

County Commissioners speak for a county each. 

Fifty-three of these report Bible reading as an 

opening exercise in all of their schools. Two 

others think the custom is universal, it being* the 

expressed wish of the superintendents to have it 

read. Twelve others report the Bible as read in 

nearly all, or in a very large per cent., and the 


statement is generally made that the custom is as 
old as the schools. Three report written or un- 
written rules, prohibiting- Bible reading-. Fourteen 
others report no Bible reading-. In these schools, 
with two exceptions, it is said that the Bible was 
formerly read in them. Three state that the Bible 
is read less than in the past, while two report that 
the custom seems to be growing-, a larger per cent, 
of teachers in the counties, reading the Bible than 
formerly. In the rest the Bible is read to some 

An order for the opening and closing exercises 
of a school at Long Island, adopted Oct. 8, 1682, 
contains the following: 

'* Art. 2. When school opens one of the children 
shall read the morning prayer as it stands in the 
catechism, and close with the prayer before dinner; 
and in the afternoon the same. The evening school 
shall begin with the Lord's Prayer and close by 

In 1838 the Legislature of New York, by a vote 

nearly unanimous, declared that — 

"In all countries some kind of religion or other 
has existed in all ages. No people on the face of 
the globe are without a prevailing national religion. 
Magistrates have sought in many countries to 
strengthen civil government by an alliance with 
some particular religion, and an intolerant exclusion 
of all others. But those who have wielded this for- 


midable power have rendered it a rival, instead of 
an auxiliary, to the public welfare — a fetter instead 
of a protection to the rights of conscience. With us 
it is wisely ordered that no one relig-ion shall be 
established by law, but that all persons shall be left 
free in their choice and in their mode of worship. 
Still, this is a Christian nation. Kinety-nine hun- 
dredths, if not a larger -pro-portion, of our whole pop- 
ulation believe in the general doctrines of the Chris- 
tian religion. 

"Our g-overnment depends for its being- on the vir- 
tue of the people — on that virtue that has its founda- 
tion in the morality of the Christian relig-ion; and 
that relig-ion is the common and prevailing- faith of 
the people. There are, it is true, exceptions to this 
belief; but general laws are not made for excepted 
cases. There are to be found here and there, the 
world over, individuals who entertain opinions hostile 
to the common sense of mankind on subjects of hones- 
ty, humanity and decency; but it would be a kind of 
republicanism with which we are not acquainted in 
this country, which would require the great mass of 
mankind to yield to and be governed b}^ this few. 

"It is quite unnecessary to enter into a detailed 
review of all the evidences that Christianity is the 
common creed of this nation. We know it and we 
feel it, as we know and feel any other unquestioned 
and admitted truth." 

NEW YORK as a State honors the use of the 
Bible in her public schools. 


C. J. Baxter, Superintendent of Public Instruc- 
tion, Trenton, N. J., writes: 

' ' Many Boards require the Bible to be read. A 


few do not. It is read in nearly all of the schools, 
and has been as far back as I can remember." 

Bancroft writes: "The people (of New Jersey) 
rejoiced under the reig-n of God, confident that He 
would 'beautify the meek with salvation.'" 

The motto on the provincial seal was, "Rig-ht- 
eousness exalteth a nation." 

With such an earl}^ record it is not surprising- 

that Bible reading" keeps its place in the school 

law of New Jerse}^ (1895, p. 45, sec. 123:) 

"It shall not be lawful for any teacher, trustee 
or trustees to introduce into, or have performed in 
any school receiving- its proportion of the public 
monev, any religious service, ceremony or forms 
w^hatsoever, except reading the Bible and repeating- 
the Lord's Praj-er." 

Jersey City has the following- rule: 

"The principals of the several departments shall 
open their schools each morning by reading- a por- 
tion of the Scriptures without note or comment." 

From twent3'-two reports received, twentj^-one 
state that the Bible is read in all the schools. 
(Of this number twelve cities have special rules 
requiring- Bible reading-.) One reports that only 
the Lord's Prayer is used. 

The rule for the Hoboken schools is — 
"rule lvii. 

" Sec. 81. The opening- exercises of each depart- 
ment shall consist of the reading- of a chapter out of 
the Bible (no comments to be made), and repeating- 
the Lord's Pra3'er. During- the above exercises the 
doors shall be kept closed, and good order shall be 


In Long Branch City, schools are opened with 
Bible reading and chanting the Lord's Prayer. 

The Book of School Laws and Decisions for the 
State of Pennsylvania contains the following decis- 
ion, page 146, no. 114: 

"114. The Scriptures come under the head of 
text-books, and they should not be omitted from the 

In the report of the Superintendent of the State 
for the school year ending June 3, 1895, the total 
number of schools in the State is 18,019. The 
number in which the Bible is read is 15,780, or 
more than eighty-seven and half per cent. The 
requisition of reports concerning Bible reading in 
schools is an incentive to fidelity of performance 
in a State which specifies the retention of the 
Scriptures among the text-books of the schools. 
Pennsylvania, taking advantage of this motive 
for the good of the schools, presents accurate 
reports upon the subject. The management of 
schools in other States may wisely give this item 
a place in their schedule in the interest of char- 
acter building. 

The rule for Bible reading in the schools of 
Philadelphia is as follows: 

"At the opening of each session of the schools 
at least ten verses of the Bible shall be read, with- 


out note or comment, to the pupils bj the principal, 
or, in his or her absence, by one of the assistants. 
A suitable h^-mn may also be sung-." 

The avowed purpose of the revered founder of 
Pennsylvania was to institute a civil government 
on the basis of the Bible. This Book must, for 
this reason, in addition to a multitude of others, 
be doubly dear to all her well instructed, patriotic 

Maine, witR her Supreme Court decision; Mass- 
achusetts, with her model State law, faithfully 
executed; Rhode Island, with her watchfulness 
for the virtue and morality of teachers and pu- 
pils; Pennsylvania, with her law forbidding- the 
exclusion of the Scriptures, and her report relat- 
ing- to Bible reading- from all teachers; New Jer- 
sey, providing- for Bible reading and the Lord's 
Pra3^er; these and the other States of the North 
Atlantic Division of our country, in their fidelity 
to the Bible, should be honored and imitated. 

With the great jurist and interpreter of truth, 

Rufus Choate, these States say: 

"We would have the Bible read, not only for its 
authoritative revelations, and its commands and ex- 
actions, obligatory yesterda}^ today and forever, 
but also for its English, for its literature, for its 
pathos, for its dim imagery, its sayings of consola- 
tion, and wisdom, and universal truth." 

Chapter IV. 

South Ati^antic Statks. 

Continuing- our tour down the Atlantic Coast 
we learn the following-: 


Hon. C. C. Tindale, State Superintendent of 
Schools, Dover, Delaware: 

" I think I am safe in saying that Bible reading, 
at opening of school, is well nigh or quite universal 
in Delaware schools." 

A loyal spirit of confidence in Bible principles, 
as essential to good citizenship, has led Delaware 
to honor the Scriptures from her earliest colon- 


Hon. K. B. Prettyman, State Superintendent of 
Schools, Baltimore, Md., writes that the Bible is 
read in a large proportion of the schools daily, 
so that the custom is almost universal. 

The Superintendent of City Schools, Baltimore, 
Md., writes as follows: 

"The Bible is read daily in our schools — the 
Lord's Prayer is also recited. I enclose a copy of 


the rule which has been in force for over thirty 

"Our schools are attended by persons of all per- 
suasions, and it ma}^ almost be said that no com- 
plaint has ever been made. 

"It seems to me that our plan is about as good as 
any of which I have any knowledge." 

The Baltimore rule is as follows: 

"Each school, either collectively or m classes, 
shall be opened by the reading of a chapter, or part 
of a chapter in the Holy Bible, and the use of the 
Lord's Pra3'er. The Douay version may be used 
separately by those pupils who prefer it." 

The intelligent and humane interest taken in 
all youth of the public schools by J. Cardinal 
Gibbons, as well as his loyalty to the Bible, is 
an omen of good to the present as well as to 
coming generations. His letter to the President 
of the Educational Union appears in Chapter 
XHI. - 

The city of Baltimore, with nearly half a mil- 
lion inhabitants, which is the centre of his influ- 
ence, has the Bible read in all its schools, with 
almost entire unanimity. 

It is pleasant to note that the Nation's Capital 
justly interprets the character and wish of the 
Nation, on the subject of Bible reading and moral 
instruction in schools. The city of Washington, 
D. C, has the following law: 


^'32. They (teachers) shall practice such disci- 
pline in their schools as would be exercised by a 
kind and judicious parent in the family, always firm 
and vig-ilant, but prudent. They shall endeavor, 
on all proper occasions, to inculcate in their pupils 
truthfulness, self-control, temperance, frug-ality, in- 
dustry, obedience to parents, reverence for the aged, 
forbearance toward the weak, respect for the rights 
of others, politeness to all, kindness to animals, de- 
sire for knowledge, and obedience to the laws of 
God; but no teacher shall exercise any sectarian in- 
fluence in the school. 

"The opening exercise in every school shall con- 
sist of reading by the teacher, without note or com- 
ment, a portion of the Bible, repeating the Lord's 
Prayer at the option of the teacher, and appropriate 
singing by the pupils." 

The District of Columbia has more than eight 
times as many children of school age to the 
square mile as the most thickly populated State 
in the Union. Loyal to the needs of its pupils, 
and intelligent as to the character and require- 
ments which public schools were destined to main- 
tain, our beautiful city of Washington honors the 
Nation's book in the Nation's schools. 


Hon. John K. Massey, State Superintendent of 
Public Instruction, Richmond, Va., writes that he 
believes that the Bible is read in nearly all the 
Virginia schools. That this has been the custom 
since their organization. 


Richmond reports the Bible as read in all her 
schools since their establishment. 

Manchester and Roanoke report fully observed 
rules requiring- Bible reading-. The rule in Ro- 
anoke specifies reading some portion of Scripture, 
the singing of a suitable h3^mn, and repeating the 
Lord's Prayer. 

Perhaps the position of Superintendents of 
Schools in Virginia cannot be more properly ex- 
pressed than by Bushrod Rust. He writes: 

"I am strongl}^ opposed to setting aside the dear 
old Bible as it stands, for all the books in Christen- 
dom. ... I believe in having the entire word 
at hand; and in reading such selections as would 
establish our youth in habits of truth, purity, up- 
rightness, unselfishness and goodness. I believe in 
being absolutelj' non-sectarian in and around our 
schools, and at the same time I would have all our 
teachers be godly men and w^omen, exemplifying all 
the graces of the Christian character in their daily 
lives before their pupils. This would tend to the 
building of high character and good citizenship. 

Mr. Rust's view that the Bible should be hon- 
ored, and that teachers should represent in their 
words and ways undenominational Bible Christi- 
anity, is truly American. 

The words of George Washington, in his fare- 
well address, should be well remembered and un- 
derstood by the people of Virginia. They appear 
in this volume, in Chapter X. 


The honor paid to the Bible in the schools of 
Virginia, shows that the admonition in the inter- 
ests of national religion and morality is heeded. 

The newer States are now looking to the East 
for guidance; and the practice of Bible reading 
in our oldest schools will be followed in the West, 
when the principles upon which it is founded are 
appreciated bj our patriotic pioneers. 

The character of the public schools of West 
Virginia is similar to that of the adjoining 
States of Pennsylvania and Ohio. Hence a rev- 
erent interest in the Bible. The Secretary of the 
State Department of Free Schools reports that the 
Bible has been read in part of the schools since 
1863. There is no State law on the subject, but 
the Supreme Court of the State decided, April 6, 
1898, that there was no law to prohibit the read- 
of the Bible in the public schools. Of the twelve 
reports received, two state that the Bible is read 
in all of the schools every day; two that it is read 
at the option of the teachers, and has been since 
the organization of the schools. Four County 
Superintendents report Bible reading in all the 
schools of their counties excepting the High 
School in one county. One reports the Bible as 
read in 25 per cent, of the schools, saying that 


formerly teachers had done but very little along- 
that line, but at present the interest is increas- 
ing-. Another writes, that the custom, although 
having- been practiced for twenty-five or thirty 
years, is at present discontinued. Another states 
that the Bible is read at the option of the teacher. 

Hon. John L. Scarborough, State Superintend- 
ent Public Instruction, Raleigh, N. C. : 

* ' In our town and city graded schools, supported 
by local taxes as a supplement to the fund regularly 
apportioned to the town or city, the Bible is gener- 
ally read, either in opening or at some other time, 
generally however at opening, the superintendent 
or principal in charge oifering a short prayer, or 
repeating the Lord's Prayer in concert with other 
teachers and pupils. . . . There is no rule about 
it, except as the custom of reading- the Book makes 
it a rule." 

Supt. Scarborough writes further: 

"North Carolina! slow and staid old State, has a 
native population, white and black, the majority of 
whom and their leaders, love the old Book, and its 
doctrines and morals. God bless her people every 
one, and keep her in the old paths." 


Hon. W. D. Mayfield, State Superintendent of 

Schools, Columbia, S. C. : 

" There is no law for or against reading from the 
Bible in our schools. Such teachers as desire to do 
so, read from it as they may choose." 


Thirteen officers report Bible reading- under 
their jurisdiction. Ten of these state that it is 
read in all of their schools. It has been read in 
the schools of Charleston, the chief city of the 
State, for the last thirt3^-five years. Of the re- 
maining three officers one states that the Bible is 
not g-enerally read; a second that the custom is 
quite common, but not so universal as it should 
be. One reports no Bible reading-. 

Thomas S. Grimke, a South Carolina statesman 

and philosopher, wrote of the harmony of our 

civil institutions with the Bible, as follows: 

*'If ever a political scheme resembled the Divine 
government it is ours, where each exists for the 
whole and the whole for each.'' 

The Bible, out of which rose the forms as well 
as the spirit of our civil institutions, should be a 
book welcomed and used in all citizen-making 

Hon. G. R. Glenn, State School Commissioner, 

Atlanta, Ga. : 

"Under our public school laws the Bible cannot 
be excluded from our schools. The teacher is left 
to use the Bible as she may see fit. I am glad to 
say that a great many of our teachers open the 
school with some sort of religious exercises, some 
times reading from the Bible," 

The Bible is read in large numbers of the pub- 


lie schools, as far back as remembrance reaches. 
Of the twelve reports received from Georgia six 
state that the Bible is read in all the schools, 
and the other six that it is read in part of them. 

The early histor}- of Georgia was bright from 
a religious and moral point of view. The object 
of the first colonists was to live wholly to the 
glory of God. On their voyage to this country 
they spent two hours each day in reading the 
Bible together; and had set times for private 
devotions and the instruction of the children. 
The qualities which made James Oglethorpe the 
father of Georgia are pre-eminently Biblical, and 
will live anew in every generation which receives 
a thorough, reverent knowledge of the Scriptures. 

Hon. Wm. N. Sheats, State Superintendent 

Public Instruction, Tallahasse, Florida: 

"There is no law prohibiting it, and most Chris- 
tian teachers read short lessons from the Bible, and 
open their schools with prayer daily." 

Of other school officers one reports Bible read- 
ing in all the schools, as having always been the 
custom under School Board rule requiring it. A 
second reports reading of the Bible in the county 
schools; two state that Bible reading may be uni- 
versal, that the practice is and has been generally 
observed in all their schools since organization. 


reading- in its schools g-enerallj. The largest 
cities practice it in all their schools. 

We learn from the above returns the impor- 
tance of a State or National rule requiring- Bible 
reading-. The exercise is of value from a literary 
and historical point of view; but chiefly because 
the Scriptures contain the standard of good citi- 
zenship, with which all American children should 
be thoroughly acquainted. 

Chapter V. 

South Central States. 

of Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, 
Louisiana, Texas, and Arkansas. So, turning- in- 
land, our inquiry' is addressed first to Kentucky. 

There is nothing- in the law of Kentucky to 
enjoin or forbid the reading- of the Bible in 
schools. The teaching- of infidel or sectarian 
doctrine is forbidden. Of the seventeen replies 
from County and City Superintendents in this 
State nine report the Bible as read in all the 
schools under their supervision, the custom hav- 
ing- been observed for twenty-five, thirty or more 
years, ever since the org-anization of the schools. 

Louisville, Kentucky's larg-est city, has the Bible 
read in every school, under a rule requiring such 


One superintendent reports that there has been 
Bible reading in all his schools since their organ- 
ization. He writes: 


"Should the Bible be removed from our schools 
I would not superintend or instruct in them. The 
Bible is our rock of public safety." 

We would advise such a superintendent to re- 
main in the schools, and work for Bible restora- 
tion if it was excluded. We believe, however, 
that no such exigency will arise if patriots are 
faithful and intellig-ent on the subject of the ur- 
gent need of the instruction of the rising genera- 
tion in the fundamental principles of morals and 
religion, which are indispensable to the well be- 
ing of society. The other superintendent reports 
Bible reading in part of the schools, and states 
that a rule will soon be made requiring it of all 
teachers. He will also urge the adoption of 
"Readings from the Bible," in all their schools. 
These two reports do honor to the educational 
interests of Tennessee. 


Five reports are received from Alabama. Three 
of them, including one from the capital of the 
State, report that Bible reading has been the 
custom in their schools since organization. The 
fourth. has no data on the subject. The fifth 
states that Bible reading is not customary. 

The Constitution of this State requires that the 


free enjoyment of all religious sentiments shall 
be held sacred. "The rights hereby secured shall 
not be construed to justify acts of licentiousness 
injurious to morals, or dangerous to the peace 
and safety of the State, or to exclude the Holy 
Bible from use in an}^ public school of this 
State " 

Of the reports received one states that the 
Lord's Prayer is used; another, that the Bible is 
read occasionally, and that vigorous efforts will 
be made to have "Readings from the Bible" in- 

One local report from this State informs us 
that there is no rule on the subject of Bible 
reading, and that the Bible has not been read 
for the last six years. From this report the cus- 
tom of the schools of the State cannot be ascer- 

Hon. J. M. Carlisle, State Superintendent of 
Public Instruction, Austin, Texas, writes that the 
State department has not collected any special 
statistics on this subject. He regrets his inability 
to aid in the preparation of this report. 

Statements received from other school officers 
report more or less Bible reading in the schools. 


In Houston the Bible is read in all the schools, 
under a law requiring- such an exercise. 


In the Bill of Rights of the State of Arkansas, 
amended in 1865, she directs her General Assem- 
bly to . . . "encourag-e schools because 'relig- 
ion, morality and knowledge ' are ' essential to 
good government,'" 

The Constitution requires the maintainance of 
free schools because "intelligence and virtue are 
the safeguards of liberty." 

Hon. Junius Jordan, State Superintendent of 
Public Instruction, Little Rock^ Arkansas, writes 
that the State constitution has no rule on the 
subject of Bible reading. That the custom has 
been observed in part of the free schools for 
twenty-five or more years, ever since such schools 
were organized. 

The above review of the Southern Central Di- 
vision of the United States, shows that the Bible 
is recognized by them all as the nation's book of 
morals. It also reveals the need of method and 
encouragement in Bible reading. 

Chapter VI. 

North Central States. 

of Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michig-an, Wisconsin, 
Minnesota, Iowa, North and South Dakota, Nebras- 
ka, and Kansas. 

tog"ether, form the great Northwestern Territory 
which was established under the ever-binding- 
Charter of Liberty, the Ordinance of 1787 — an 
ordinance adopted before the United States Con- 
stitution was, and concerning- which the Supreme 
Court of the United States directed (Menard v. 
Aspasia, 1831), "Instead of looking- to their con- 
stitutions as the fundamental law they must look 
to the ordinance of 1787." As this ordinance 
sustains such a binding- relation to the conduct 
of the free schools in five of the great States of 
the North Central Division, we quote concerning- 
it at leng-th from an address upon the subject 
delivered by Hon. Charles C. Bonney, the orig-in- 


ator and President of the World's Congresses of 

the Columbian ^Exposition, before the Colleg-e of 

Law in Chicago: 

"What I chiefly desire is, that I may so present 
the subject of my argument, and the authorities on 
which it rests, that others, especially those who 
diifer with me in opinion, may for themselves fairly 
judge whether my conclusions are correct. 


"First. That the intent of the Ordinance of 1787 
is — that religion, morality and knowledge shall be 
taught, as necessary to good government and the 
happiness of mankind. 

' ' Second. That the ratification of the Ordinance, 
in the creation of the public school, seminary and 
university funds, in effect pledged those funds to a 
perpetual trust for education in the religion, moral- 
ity and knowledge named in the compact of 1787. 

"Third. That the religion named in the Ordi- 
nance is the broad and tolerant Christianity of the 
New Testament, without distinction of sect or creed, 
being that religion which is a part of the common 
law of England, and which has been generally 
adopted in this country, modified by the provisions 
of American law in favor of religious liberty. 

Fourth. That this religion of the law is specifi- 
cally the Biblical form of Christianity, including 
the King James version of the Holy Bible, because 
that form and that version were recognized and up- 
held by the common law in preference to all others. 
The law delights in exactness and abhors uncer- 
tainty. What it recognizes and upholds it can iden- 
tify and define. It thus designates with perfect 
precision the Scriptures it holds to be the Word of 
God, and the religion v/hich it adjudges to be of 
Divine origin and authenticity. 


"Fifth. That the reig-n of this relig-ion, under the 
Ordinance of 1787, has been as benign and peaceful 
as the spirit of that marvelous hiwwhich the Divine 
lips uttered on the mountain to the astonished peo- 
ple, and whose influence on modern jurisprudence 
may be likened to a shining- stream enriching- a fruit- 
ful field, or to the mild radiance of the galaxy, giv- 
ing to all the constellations an additional charm; 
and that all classes of order-loving people are inter- 
ested in maintaining this standard religion of the 
country', under which Jew and Catholic, as well as 
Presbyterian and Methodist, have found freedom 
from persecution and liberty of conscience. 

"Sixth. That the civil law consists of general 
rules, such as are deemed promotive of the greatest 
good of the greatest number, and makes no attempt 
to adapt itself to the ever var^^ng notions of indi- 
viduals. That thus the religion of the law consists 
of the great precepts of Christianity, and that modes 
of worship, the teaching of creeds, the administra- 
tion of sacraments, and the support of ministers, are 
left to the various voluntary organizations of the 
church — Catholic, Protestcint, or otherwise, alike. 

"Seventh. That the reading of the Bible in the 
public schools, without note or comment, was not 
secured by any sectarian effort or influence, but was 
in accordance with an almost universal sentiment, 
and sprang from the recognition by the State of its 
duty to cause religion and morality to be taught in 
the schools, as necessary to good government; and 
that such reading of the Bible is a perfect compli- 
ance with the letter and spirit of the Ordinance of 

' ' Eighth. That the separation of Church and State 
in the American system, is a distinctly different thing 
from the recent attempts to expel Christianity 
from the public institutions of the State, commenc- 
ing with the public schools; and that there is no 


leg*al ground on which such expulsion can be suc- 
cessfully defended, but that the public peace and 
g-ood order, and the g-eneral welfare of all relig"ious 
denominations would best be subserved by continu- 
ing the established order of the g-overnment in re- 
gard to religious instruction in the public schools. 
The State does not promulgate the great principles 
of religion for the same purpose, nor upon the same 
plan, as the church. The latter seeks the eternal 
welfare of souls; the former aims to secure good 
government and the happiness of mankind." 

Then follows an enumeration of rules of legal 
construction, with definitions of the terms religion 
and morality; after which is given the following 
important summary of measures relating to and in- 
cluding the Ordinance of 1787: 

"July 9, 1778, the Articles of Confederation and 
National Union were adopted. 

"March 1, 1784, the cession of the Northwestern 
Territory by Virginia to the General Government. 

"July 13, 1787, after the discussion of various 
plans the Ordinance for the government of the 
Northwestern Territory was adopted. This Terri- 
tory now comprises the States of Ohio, Indiana, Illi- 
nois, Michigan, and Wisconsin. Contemporaneously 
Dr. Manasseh Cutler purchased of the General Gov- 
ernment some five or six millions of acres of land in 
the Territory for the Ohio Company and other par- 
ties — the provisions of the unalterable compact of 
the Ordinance being one of the chief inducements 
to, and probably one of the chief conditions of the 
purchase. The provisions of the compact, unalter* 
able except by the mutual consent of the original 


States, and the people and States in the Territory, 
are briefly as follows: 

** Art. I provides for relig-ious liberty. 

*' Art. II provides for civil liberty. 

*'Art. Ill provides for the perpetual encourag-e- 
ment of schools and the means of education, to in- 
culcate relig"ion, morality, and knowledg^e, as neces- 
sary to g-ood government and the happiness of man- 

"Art. IV provides for the perpetual membership 
of the National Union, the national supremacy, and 
the freedom of the g-reat fresh waters. 

"Art. V provides for the formation of not less 
than three nor more than five States. 

"Art. VI provides for the prohibition of slavery 
and the return of fug-itives. 

"Sept. 17, 1787, the National Constitution was 

" May 7, 1800, the act of Cong-ress for the forma- 
tion and g-overnment of Indiana Territory was rati- 
fied, and reafi&rmed the Ordinance of 1787. 

"February 3, 1809, a like act, ratification and re- 
affirmance for the formation of Illinois Territory, 
and the establishment of a g-overnment therein. . . . 

"Dec. 13, 1818, the joint resolution of Congress 
declaring- the Constitution of Illinois in conformity 
with the ordinance of 1787, and admitting- the State 
into the Union. . . . 

"The provision of the Ordinance of 1787 for per- 
petual religious liberty is as follows: 'No person 
demeaning- himself in a peaceable and orderly man- 
ner shall ever be molested, on account of his mode 
of worship or relig-ious sentiments, in the said Ter- 

" The purposes of the practically unalterable com- 
pact of 1787 are declared to be — 

" 'Extending- the fundamental principles of civil 
and relig-ious liberty, which form the basis whereon 


these republics, their laws and constitutions, are 
erected; and to fix and establish these principles as 
the basis of all laws, constitutions and g-overnments, 
which forever shall be formed in said Territory; 
and to provide also for the establishment of States 
and permanent g-overnments therein, and for their 
admission to a share in the Federal Councils on 
equal footing- with the orig-inal States, at as early 
periods as may be consistent with the general in- 

' ' Thus the principles of civil and religious liberty, 
as known and understood when those terms were 
introduced into the ordinances, are for all time, and 
as a matter of law, to be held the foundation of free 
government. Religion is recognized, not ignored. 
Its perpetual liberty and inculcation are guaranteed, 
not prohibited." 

Concerning the statement in his fourth paragraph, 
page 52, Mr. Bonney writes as follows: 

" The way in which the King James version of 
the Bible became the legally recognized copy of the 
Sacred Scriptures in Kngland, and by adoption in 
America is as follows: 

' ' King James the First appointed fifty-four emi- 
nent men to make a new translation of the Sacred 
Scriptures. In 1607 forty-seven of these appointees 
met, and entered upon the work, to which they de- 
voted the following three years. In 1610 their 
translation was published, and this is ' the one which 
has ever since been printed by public authority, and 
generally used in the British dominions.' 

''The common law of Kngland, and the statutes 
in furtherance thereof, which are of a general na- 
ture and not local to that kingdom, have been gen- 
erally adopted in this country. The statute of such 
adoption in Illinois includes the common law and 


amendatory statutes prior to the fourth year of 
James the First. 

"Under these circumstances the King" James ver- 
sion of the Bible was introduced into this country; 
and while I do not recall any legislative act express- 
ly adopting- it, I regard the universal adoption of 
this translation by the executive, legislative and 
judicial departments of the government, in the ad- 
ministration of official oaths and otherwise, as estab- 
lishing beyond controversy the fact that the King 
James version of the Holy Bible is, in contemplation 
of American law, the authorized edition of the Sa- 
cred Scriptures. However, all the leading transla- 
tions of the Bible are justly regarded as essentially 
one with the James version. 

The foregoing facts and decisions concerning 
this ordinance of 1787 — unalterable and forever 
binding upon the United States, and with especial 
force upon the eighteen of the oldest, most thickly 
populated and wealthiest States of the Union, who 
were the immediate parties to the transaction — 
carry with them irresistible weight, and as an 
interpretation of the character of the religion and 
morality necessary to good government and the 
prosperity of our nation, should be studied and 

The concluding sentence of the seventh section 
of the Bill of Rights in the present Constitution 
of the State of Ohio is nearly identical with the 
article concerning schools in the Ordinance of 


1787. And, by the general custom of Bible read- 
ing- throughout the State, Ohio indicates the book 
in which the religion and morality required by 
the State is to be found. 

Of reports received from fifty-two counties and 
cities in Ohio, thirty-three state that the Bible is 
read in every school. 

One superintendent writes: 

*' All our schools, from the first primary through 
the high school, have the Bible read and a short 
praj^er or the Lord's Prayer repeated, accompanied 
by some appropriate song. We thoroughly believe 
in it, and we know that it has a good influence on 
our children. 


Indiana has the following law on the subject. 

(1865, p. 3. Approved and in force March 6, 1865.) 

" 4493. Bible. The Bible shall not be excluded 
from the public schools of the State. (167.) " 

The following note is of interest in this con- 

*' The Bible, without note or comment, is installed 
in the common schools of Indiana. Its continuance, 
as a moral class book in these nurseries of her future 
citizens, will as surely mark the period of her pros- 
perity and grace the zenith of her glory, as its exclu- 
sion would prove the precursor of her decline, the 
herald of her shame." — Mills^ Supt 

Reports are received from thirty county and 
twenty-eight city superintendents. Eighteen re- 


port that the Bible is read in all their schools. 
Thirt}^ school officers report that it is read in 
part of their schools. Three report no Bible 
reading-. Six of the City Boards have rules con- 
cerning" Bible reading-, one of which we quote: 

"greensbukg rule. 
"Sec. 3. Opening of the schools. The school 
shall be opened in the morning- with reading- of the 
Bible, and pra3^er or singing-; but the first shall in 
no case be omitted." 

Deep interest on this subject is expressed by- 
some of the superintendents. One writes as fol- 

"I am now serving- my tlaird term as county super- 
intendent, I am a Catholic. I feel glad to know 
thai Cardinal Gibbons and Mg-r. Satolli endorse this 
work for schools. Catholics are accused of being- 
enemies to public schools, but if the truth is told it 
will be found they are their friends instead. The 
Catholics have but one objection to public schools, 
and that is that moral instruction, teaching- children 
their duties to God and man, have no place in the 
course of study. This all important work is left to 
the caprice of the agnostic, as well as to the good 
intention of the Christian. 

"I hope that you may succeed in your good work, 
and the day is near at hand when all children can 
enjoy the instruction that you are trying to impart." 

This gentleman sends a fine address, prepared by 

himself, entitled, "The Moral Phase of School 




Three distinguished residents of Chicago, in 
view of their work for the Bible in Schools, are 
accorded the first place in our Illinois report. 

Hon. W. J. Onahan, Chairman of the Editorial 
Committee having the preparation of "Readings 
from the Bible '' in charge, perhaps the most dis- 
tinguished Roman Catholic layman in America, 
expressed himself as follows: 

"We do not wish to outline any scholar's religious 
belief. We simply want to lay the foundation for a 
belief of some kind. Personally I should regret not 
having done what I could to make it impossible for 
a child to grow up in ignorance of God. Let them 
grow up in what church they may, but let them 
have a belief of some kind." 

Dr. John Henry Barrows, the second member of 
this committee, so well known throughout Amer- 
ica and in foreign lands, wrote as follows: 

"It is historically certain that the best elements 
of our institutions sprang from the Bible. . . . 
There is surely no agnostic in Chicago whose judg- 
ment has the weight of Prof. Huxley's, and he knew 
of no substitute for the Bible equal in value to the 
Hebrew and Christian Scriptures." 

And the Hon. C. C. Bonney, the third member 

of the Editorial Committee, summed up the legal 

aspect of the case as follows: 

'*In contemplation of law no injury is possible as 

the result of reading the Bible in the public schools. 

"In contemplation of law the exclusion of the 


Sacred Scriptures from the public schools is an in- 
dig-nitj to the sovereig-n authority, and a violation 
of the compact of 1787. 

''In contemplation of law such exclusion is a 
breach of the trust on which the school funds are 
held, and an injury- to all who are interested in the 
schools. The bane of American education is the 
idea that mere knowledg-e will make useful men and 

"Relig'ion, morality and knowledg-e all being- 
necessary to g-ood g-overnment and the happiness of 
mankind, they should all be taught in the public 
schools, where the children and youth oug-ht to learn 
the virtues we desire to have them practice when 
they arrive at mature years." 

Hon. Samuel M. Inglis, State Superintendent 
Public Instruction, Springfield, Illinois: 

" The Constitution of the State neither requires 
nor forbids the reading of the Bible." 

Of the seventy-one reports received from city 
and county public school superintendents, seven 
report Bible reading regularly in all their schools. 
Four more state in 'nearly all.' Twenty-eight 
others write that it is read in part of their schools 
at the teacher's option. Twelve report no Bible 
reading. Others observe an unwritten law, based 
on custom or the will of the teacher. This hap- 
hazard way of treating the Book, containing the 
United States standard of morals, unintentionally 
encourages heedless, slovenly habits of thought 
concerning personal rectitude. 


The general verdict of men and constitutions 
is, that Bible reading in nowise disturbs the free 
exercise of religious and moral freedom, but that 
it promotes a high standard of integrity, and is a 
solid foundation for permanent national prosperity. 

One superintendent writes, after reviewing the 
book of Bible Selections: 

*'I should be greatly pleased to have it (Readings 
from the Bible) adopted." Another, " It is all right 
in inception and execution." A third states, " I am 
in favor of it." 

On the general subject of Bible reading one 
superintendent writes: 

*' All of our public schools have been opened daily 
with devotional exercises, and nearl}'- all of our 
teacher's meetings have been opened with prayer." 

Another, "Teachers are requested to open morn- 
ing sessions with appropriate songs, the reading of 
a Bible selection and prayer. They are to make no 
comments in these or other social exercises of a sec- 
tarian character, but reverence for God and respect 
for holy things must be inculcated and enforced in 
every school." 


Hon. Henry R. Pattengill, State Superintendent 

Schools, Lansing, Michigan, writes: 

"I am very glad to do anything I can to assist 
you in your laudable work. I think your "Read- 
ings from the Bible " are very excellent indeed. I 
see no reason why these books should not De used in 
every school." 


Of the one hundred and twenty-six returns from 
superintendents and teachers in Michigan, one 
hundred and fourteen report Bible reading- in part 
or all the schools under their care. In nine coun- 
ties the Bible is read in every school. 


Fifty-three reports from officers of the Wiscon- 
sin schools have been received. All indicate a 
lo3'al observance of the construction placed upon 
the decision of the Supreme Court in 1890, in the 
city of Edgerton case. A careful reading of the 
Decision seems to show that it would not be a viola- 
tion of the general rule excluding the Bible to permit 
the use of some book of suitable Scripture Selec- 
tions. The passage referred to is found on page 
17, section 5, in the pamphlet containing a copy 
of the decision of the Supreme Court of Wiscon- 
sin, concerning the district board of school dis- 
trict No. 8, of the city of Edgerton. It is as 
follows : 

"Furthermore, there is much in the Bible which 
cannot be characterized as sectarian. There can be 
no valid objection to the use of such matter in the 
secular instruction of the pupils. Much of it has 
great historical value, which may be thus utilized 
without violating the constitutional prohibition. 

"It ma}' also be used to inculcate good morals — 
that is, our duties to each other — which may and 
ought to be inculcated by the district schools. No 


more complete code of morals exists than is con- 
tained in the New Testament, which reaffirms and 
emphasizes the moral oblig-ations laid down in the 
Ten Commandments. 

"Concerning- the fundamental principles of moral 
ethics the relig-ious sects do not disagree." 

The following- sentiment was prepared for the use 
of the Wisconsin schools in their patriotic exer- 
cises, in May, 1896: 

"The best citizen, the best patriot, the best son 
of his country, is he who g-ives the best manhood to 
his country. He is the man who writes upon his 
nature the Ten Commandments and the Nine Beat- 

Kvery g-raduate of public schools should be re- 
quired to know these selections from the Bible. 

Madison Democrat, Wis., July, 1896: " W. J. Ona- 
han, J. H. Barrows, and C. C. Bonney, are Western 
men, well known and most hig-hly esteemed. The 
first is a disting-uished lay member of the church; 
the second is the brilliant Presbyterian divine; and 
the third won special distinction as the President 
of the g-reat World's Cong-resses during- the Colum- 
bian Exposition. This able trio has recently com- 
bined its g-enius and its judg-ment in a volume of 200 
pag-es. In it are the choicest and best, the most 
elevating- and inspiring- passag-es to be found in the 
Bible, and the whole work is especially designed to 
meet a want in the public schools. Selections have 
been made with an utter independence of creed; and 
teachers will find the book a very great aid, and an 
immense economy in research and study." 

Even as all political parties of the United 

States honor our Flag- and National Constitution, 


SO should the people of every faith look to our 
Nation's Bible for instruction in National rig-ht- 


Hon. W. W. Pendergast, State Superintendent 

Public Instruction, St. Paul, Minnesota, writes: 

"I have to some extent examined the book enti- 
tled ' Readings from the Bible,' and think the selec- 
tions have been made with the g-reatest of care and 
the best of judgment." 

Since the above writing the book has been in- 
troduced into the schools of Minneapolis. Bible 
reading is also a custom in others of Minnesota's 


The school law of Iowa states (sec. 1764, p. 57): 

*' The Bible shall not be excluded from any school 
or institution in this State, nor shall any pupil be 
required to read it contrary to the wishes of nis 
parent or guardian." 

Hon. Henry Sabin, Superintendent of Public 

Instruction, Des Moines, Iowa, writes: 

"The great fault in the education of today is un- 
doubtedly the tendency to crowd the intellect, and 
to neglect nearly everything which tends toward 
moral training. I think the selections are most 
judiciously chosen, and that the book is well adapt- 
ed to carry out the praiseworthy design. I cannot 
see how it can be objectionable to any one who has 
the welfare of the children at heart." 


In twenty replies from county and city superin- 
tendents all but two report Bible reading- in all 
or part of their schools. Three Boards report 
special rules on the subject, as follows: 

North Des Moines. 

" 3. A recog-nition of the divine character of Gcd, 
and of the accountability of man, is expected of all 
the teachers, particularly in the brief opening- exer- 
cises of each day; but all matters of a sectarian 
character shall be excluded from the schools." 

Fort Dodge. 

' ' Opening- exercises shall be held in all the de- 
partments, and may consist of Bible reading-, with- 
out note or comment, prayer, music or other appro- 
priate exercises, at the option of the teacher." 


''( School Manual, 4. 48, sees. 50 and 52.) 
''Sec. 50. They shall open the morning- session 
in each school with reading- from the Bible, follow- 
ed by prayer or appropriate sing-ing, at the option 
of the teacher." 

The reports favorable to Bible reading- came 
from Iowa's best cities. In addition to those 
whose rules are quoted above are Sioux City, 
Burling-ton, Muscatine, Ottumwa, Marshalltown, 
and others. The custom of Bible reading- ex- 
tends back to the organization of the schools. 

One county superintendent writes: "We find in 
the Bible beautiful literature, excellent teaching's, 
and the foundation of our discipline." 

The Herald, Dubuque, Iowa: "Bible reading-s 


cannot be too much impressed upon the minds of 
the youth." 


Hon, John R. Kirk, State Superintendent of 

Schools, St. Louis, Mo., writes: 

" There is not a S3^11able in the school law of this 
State with reference to Bible reading- in the public 
schools. The matter is left entirely to the Board 
of Directors of each district to settle according- to 
the wishes of the community." 

Eig"hteen replies from city and county superin- 
tendents report Bible reading- in all or part of 
their schools. 

The Attorney-General of Missouri, since the 
above returns were received, has issued an "opin- 
ion," which is interpreted by some to exclude 
Bible reading-. 

One superintendent writes: 

"Your enterprise deserves the greatest encour- 
ag-ement from educators. I have received and ex- 
amined carefully the book, "Reading-s from the 
Bible," and think such a book should be in every 
school course as a supplementary reader. Kvery 
boy and g-irl should know it well." 

Another states that "each school room acknowl- 
edges God in some way every morning. . . . Char- 
acter building is an important factor with us." 

W: S. Chaplin, Washington University, St. Louis, 

Missouri, writes: 

"I have examined the book (Readings from the 
Bible) with some care, and I approve of it most 


heartily. I believe tliat some sucli book as this, 
compiled bj representative men from Jewish, Cath- 
olic, and Protestant churches, will make it possible 
for us to g-ive the Bible its proper place in the 


Hon. Kmma F. Bates, State Superintendent Pub- 
lic Instruction, Bismarck, N. D. : 

" I am in receipt of a copy of " Reading-s from the 
Bible," with which I am very much pleased. Your 
work has my most hearty approval." 

Mrs. Bates sends the following- from the Revised 
Code of 1896: 

" Sec. 754. The Bible shall not be deemed a sec- 
tarian book. It shall not be excluded from any pub- 
lic school. It may, at the option of the teacher, be 
read in school, without sectarian comment, not to 
exceed ten minutes daily. No pupil shall be required 
to read it, nor to be present in the school room dur- 
ing the reading" thereof, contrary to the wishes of 
his parents, guardian or other person having him in 

"Moral instruction, tending to impress upon the 
minds of the pupils the importance of truthfulness, 
temperance, purit}^ public spirit, patriotism, and 
respect for honest labor, obedience to parents, and 
due deference to old age, shall be given by each 
teacher in the public schools." 

The provision for the establishment and main- 
tenance of schools is founded upon the necessity 
of a high degree of intelligence, patriotism, in- 
tegrity and morality on the part of every voter 
in a government "of the people, by the people, 


and for the people." The protection of the pros- 
perity and happiness of the people demands in- 
struction from our g-overnment in these virtues. 

A rig-ht position is that taken by North Dakota. 
Such sentiments planted in the souls of our brave 
young- pioneers will be a grand foundation for a 
noble State. 


Hon. Geo. N. Parker, Deputy Superintendent 

Public Instruction, Pierre, S. D. : 

" We send you a copy of the School haw of 1891, 
on page 44 of which you will find all the law we 
have upon the reading of the Bible in the public 
schools. . . . We have examined the publica- 
tion (Readings from the Bible) you mention, and 
are much pleased with it." 

South Dakota School Law, p. 44, sec. 18: 

'* No sectarian doctrine shall be taught or incul- 
cated in any of the schools of the corporation; but 
the Bible, without any sectarian comment, may be 
read therein." 

Of the thirteen reports received from city and 

county superintendents, five state that the Bible 

is read in all the schools, and eight that it is 

read in part of them. 


Hon. H. R. Corbett, State Superintendent of 
Schools, Lincoln, Nebraska: 

" The State of Nebraska has, by its laws and the 


reg-ulations of the Department of Education, always 
encourag-ed moral culture in its public educational 
system. The Bible is g-enerally read in our schools. 
I have, however, no carefully compiled data show 
ing- the exact extent or nature of the efforts in this 

" I have examined the book entitled "Readings 
from the Bible," and reg-ard it as one of the most 
important educational publications of recent times. 
It will certainly facilitate the introduction of Scrip- 
ture reading into many schools where such exercises 
have heretofore been impossible." 

From the thirty replies received from city and 
county superintendents, twenty-five report Bible 
reading- in part or all of the schools. 

The Bible has held an honored place in the 
educational system of Nebraska since the org-an- 
ization of its public school system. 

One superintendent, answering- the questions in 

regard to Bible reading in the negative, writes: 

"I read these questions aloud to our teachers in 
attendance at the Institute, and I think if you ask 
us the same questions next year I can answer. Yes." 


Hon. K. Stanley, State Superintendent Public 
Instruction, Topeka, Kansas, writes: 

" We have but little law bearing upon the subject 
of Bible or moral instruction in the common schools 

of the State I like your little book, 

"Readings from the Bible," selected for schools, 
very much. I think the selections aie very well 


In twenty-four replies from county and city 
superintendents, nineteen report Bible reading- in 
part or all of their schools. 

One superintendent writes: 

*'You surely have done all in this book (Read- 
ings from the Bible) that any one could reasonably 
ask of you." 

In all the States in the North Central Division 
the Bible is admitted to be the book containing- 
the ke}' to our nation's stability, and to all that 
is noble, pure, and true in life. With one excep- 
tion there is a g-eneral recog-nition of the Bible as 
unsectarian in our State Constitutions. 

Chapter Vll. 

The^ Wkstkrn State:s. 

THK WKSTKRN DIVISION consists of Mon- 
tana, Wyoming-, Colorado, Utah, Nevada, Idaho, 
Washing-ton, Oregon, and California. 

The circuitous journey through specific reports 
is nearly completed, for the g-reat territory of the 
West is not yet So subdued, physically and spirit- 
ually, as to admit of its being populous with 
happy school children. 


Hon. E. A. Steere, State Superintendent Public 
Instruction, Helena, Montana, states that there is 
no rule in the Constitution of Montana concern- 
the Bible. That it is read in a few of the 
schools. He expresses his approbation of *' Read- 
ings from the Bible" as follows: "I am highly 
pleased with its contents." 

Another superintendent sends a hearty approval 
of the new book. 

The western states. 7:^ 


Hon. Estelle Reele, State Superintendent Public 

Instruction, Che3'enne, W3^oming-: 

"There is no provision whatever in the Wyoming- 
School Laws relative to the matter (Bible reading-), 
it being left entirely to local school boards, or, in 
almost all cases, to the individual teachers. 
I have examined the copy of ' Readings from the 
Bible' sent me, and I like it very much." 

In eight replies from county and city superin- 
tendents five report Bible reading in part or all 
of the schools. 

Hon. A. J. Peavey, State Superintendent Pub- 
lic Instruction, Denver, Colorado: 

"I have examined the Bible readings, and con- 
sider it very valuable. We have no statistics about 
Bible reading-." 

In twenty-four replies from city and county 

superintendents fifteen report Bible reading- in 

part or all of the schools. One writes as follows: 

"I am in hearty accord with the movement, and 
hope to see Bible reading practiced for morning- 
exercises in all the schools of this county. I shall 
take pleasure in directing the attention of the Insti- 
tute to this very important subject." 


Hon. John R. Parks, State Superintendent Pub- 
lic Instruction, Salt Lake City, Utah: 

"While morality is taught and inculcated in all 


of the public schools of this State the Bible is not 
read in any of them. The belief seems to be quite 
wide-spread here that moral teaching- in the public 
schools should be wholly non-sectarian, and many 
believe it to be impossible to introduce the Bible 
into the schools without at the same time removing- 
one of the strong-est g-uards ag-ainst sectarianism." 


Hon. H. C. Cutting-, State Superintendent Pub- 
lic Instruction, Carson City, Nevada: 

"Althoug-h there is not one school in the State 
where the Bible is read efforts at moral training- are 
made in all." 


Hon. C. A. Forsman, State Superintendent 

Public Instruction, Boise City, Idaho: 

"Our school law prohibits any reading- of the 
Bible, or, at least, that is the recog-nized construc- 


Hon. C. W. Bean, State Superintendent Public 

Instruction, Olympia, Washing-ton, forwards a 

copy of the Attorney-General's ruling- ag-ainst the 

reading- of the Bible in the public schools of the 

State. Fifteen reports from county and city 

superintendents are received, which state that the 

Bible is not read, such reading- being- under the 

ban of Attorney-General's ruling*. One writes: 

"I believe the day will come when the Bible 

may be read and taug-ht. 



Hon. G. M. Irwin, State Superintendent of Pub- 
lic Instruction, Salem, Oregon, writes that the 
Bible is not generally read in the schools of the 
State. Ten reports are received from county 
superintendents. Six state that there is Bible 
reading- in a few of their schools. There is no 
rule in Oregon prohibiting the reading of the 
Bible, and in some schools it is reported to have 
been read for forty-eight years. 

The public press of Oregon, in common with 

the newspapers throughout the United States, 

that desire to protect and improve O'Ur grand 

American Institutions, hail with approbation a 

movement encouraging Bible reading by the 

pupils of the common schools. 

Portland Oregonian: *'The banishment of the 
Bible from the schools was a misfortune in an 
important sense, because no education is complete 
without a knowledge of it. . . . The experi- 
ment of the Chicago Union promises to prove a 
practical method of solving the troublesome prob- 
lem. Common sense study of the Bible may, in this 
wa}', find a fitting place in our public schools." 


Hon. Samuel T. Black, State Superintendent 

Public Instruction, Sacramento, Cal., refers the 

questions relating to Bible reading in the schools 

to the county superintendents of his State. 


Twenty-six replies to these questions have been 

received. Seven report Bible reading- in part of 

the schools. One writes that "it is read for its 

literary value, stating- that many of its stories 

are required to be told and read in course of 


The book, "Readings from the Bible," is at 

work in this noble State, from which g-reat things 

are expected. 

One superintendent writes as follows: "I am 
much pleased that something- is being- done in this 
direction. I have read the notices that have ap- 
peared from time to time in the papers with refer- 
ence to the preparation of a book of extracts from 
the Bible. I shall surely try to have it introduced 
into our schools." 

The Call, San Francisco, Cal. : " This useful little 
book is published by a committee, who have acted 
in conjunction with representatives of the Jewish, 
Catholic, and Protestant bodies." 

"San Francisco Chronicle, San Francisco, Cal.: 
* ' A little Manual, that will appeal to any teacher 
of young children, is 'Readings from the Bible,' 
prepared under the supervision of the Chicago 
Woman's Educational Union. The desig-n of the 
book was to furnish short selections from the Bible, 
which could be read in unison. The book has been 
well edited. ... It deserves a wide circulation, 
for it is non-sectarian, and is thus adapted to any 

Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles, Cal. : " We are 
glad to see a work of this character prepared for use 
in our public schools, one to which Jewish, Catholic 


or Protestant bodies can find no objection. . . . 
The book is somewhat graded in its arrang-ement. 
It answers a felt educational need, and without 
doubt will aid in the intellectual and moral develop- 
ment of the pupils in our schools wherever adopted. 
We wish it mig-ht be introduced into every school in 
the land." 

There is a loud call from these States for in- 
tellig-ent and patriotic attention to the subject of 
Bible reading- in their public schools. Five out 
of nine of the g-reat Western States permit Bible 
reading-, and enjoy its felicitous influences in 
many of their schools. May the number increase. 
We hope the other four will soon place Bible 
reading- in their public schools, and by all rea- 
sonable efforts aid in making- the whole Nation, 
in responsive recog-nition, what it is by right — 
"God's Country." 

Chapter Vlll. 

Thk Nation's Book and Idbai, Citize^nship. 

The choice by the fathers and founders of the 
Republic of the Bible as our Nation's book, and 
their wisdom in making- it indispensable to the 
schoolroom, stands the test of time. 

In the evolution of ideal life modern educators 
properly seek the symmetrical development of 
every faculty of mind and body. Advancing from 
rudimentary beginnings in kindergartens and pri- 
mary schools, the departments of physical culture, 
manual training, language, trade, science, and 
writing, music, art, literature, morals and relig- 
ion, all claim attention. 

The Bible gives the axiomatic principles upon 
which all these needs essential to complete human 
life are founded, and in the more subtle branches 
of music, art, literature, morals and religion, the 
Scriptures hold the supreme place. For instance, 
take the relation of 


*' Praise Him with stringed instruments and 


org-ans. Let ever3'thing' that hath breath praise 
the Lord," is the command of the Word. The 
song of the morning- stars when the corner stone 
of the earth was laid, the anthems of ang-els in 
the sk}', the visions of heaven's millions with 
their song-s of "blessing-, honor, g-lory, and power 
to Him that sitteth upon the throne;" and the 
innumerable company of harpers, harping- with 
their harps, are but the white caps and waves 
upon the solemn ocean of music which rolls 
throug-h the Bible with ever changing- melody 
and cadence. It tells of Jubal and his successors, 
who make musical instruments; of Miriam, Deb- 
orah, and many others, who sing triumphal 
songs; of King David, the sweet psalmist of 
Israel, and other singers and players on musical 
instruments; of Solomon, with his men and wom- 
en singers and musical instruments of all sorts; of 
the Babylonians, with their cornets, flutes, harps, 
and dulcimers. The Bible has a place for the 
minor music of the desolate captive, and the sol- 
emn cheerfulness of the psalm singer. 

Handel, Hayden, Mozart and the great com- 
pany of song writers and musicians honor them- 
selves and bless humanity by the rehabilitation 
of exalted Biblical sentiments. How one's spirit- 
ual nature is roused and ennobled by grand 

80 THK nation' book. 

hymns, anthems and oratorios. Subdued, the 
soul bows with reverence before the march of the 
music-chained thought: 

"Wonderful! Counsellor! the Mighty God, the 
Everlasting- Father, the Prince of Peace." 

And again, erect in the consciousness of their 
heavenly origin and opportunity, the multitudes 

"Hallelujah. For the Lord God omnipotent 

Surely the Bible "Lives on the ear, like music 
that can never be forgotten." 

So with Art. The pictures of the old masters 
in the galleries and churches of Kurope — to see 
which thousands of tourists go abroad each year 
— have for their subjects Biblical scenes, and the 
Book from which they are taken must be under- 
stood if the paintings are to be appreciated and 
fully enjoyed. The Scriptures give an unfading 
charm to them, which becomes part of the life of 
their intelligent admirers. 

Ideal citizens are the natural result of the in- 
structions of our Nation's wonderful Book, 

Chapter IX. 

The Bible as Literature. 

Prof. R. G, Moulton, with philosophical dis- 
crimination, writes that — 

"The Eng-lish Bible is the natural source to 
which the Eng-lish people should go for their train- 
ing- in Literature. The Bible is in fact the supreme 
English classic. . . . 

'* The Bible is a whole Literature within the com- 
pass of a single volume. 

"It is universally recognized as being on the 
highest conceivable literary level. Its range ex- 
tends from the earliest efforts of the world to a 
period in touch with modern thought. Thus the 
Bible lends itself to the historical, evolutionary 
study of Literature." 

The value of the Bible in our Nation's schools 
as literature, and as the parent, of literature, is 
superior immeasurably to all other writing. Mrs. 
A. C. Sherwood says: 

"As an inspiration to all noblest thought no book 
was ever written comparable to it. In imagery, 
poetry, exalted sentiment, and the whole field of all- 
em Dracing truths, which touch man at every point 
of his being, this book of books approaches the 
world's highest conception of perfection. Our finest 

82 THK BiBivE AS literature:. 

English classics are founded upon it. ' The music 
of its familiar phrases haunt all the groves and 
fields of our noblest literature.' " 

Goethe, who has been called the Shakespeare 
of Germany, has said: 

"It is a belief in the Bible which has served me 
as the guide of my literary life." 

"The Bible, in England and America, has been 
the pivotal point around which the thoughts and 
teachings of the writers and thinkers of the present 
have revolved. It has given coloring to their high- 
est ideals. From the vast treasurj^ of the Bible 
these authors have drawn their matchless gems of 
thought and inspiration, and embodied them in 
glowing prose or verse, to catch the senses and en- 
chain the heart of a waiting world." 

C. W. Shepardson writes: 

"Laying aside all question of religion a knowl- 
edge of the Bible should be a part of a common 

"A short time since a teacher, in the seventh 
grade of a city school, commented in my presence 
upon the ignorance of the children regarding the 
Bible. She illustrated her remarks from her own 
experience as a teacher. In the reading lesson there 
was a reference to Elijah, which was a new name 
to most of the children who read it, giving the ac- 
cent in pronunciation on the first syllable. Upon 
inquiry she found that there was only one child in 
the room who could tell anything about Elijah. 

"Without Biblical knowledge it is impossible to 
appreciate the beauties of art or literature. . . . 


In literature, taking- Tennyson alone as an example, 
how can any one full}' comprehend his meaning- who 
has no knowledo^e of events referred to in such pas- 

sag-es as — 

' That God would move 
And strike the hard, hard rock, and thence. 
Sweet in their inmost bitterness. 
Would issue tears of penitence.' 

' Like that strange angel, which of old. 
Until the breaking of the light. 
Wrestled with wandering Israel,'" 
The masterful summing up, by Dr. Philip Schaff, 
of the literary merit of the Bible, contains the 
"conclusion of the whole matter": 

"Viewed merely as a human or literary produc- 
tion the Bible is a marvellous book, and without a 
rival. All the libraries of theology, philosophy, 
history, antiquity, poetr}-, law and policy would 
not furnish material enough for so rich a treasure 
of the choicest gems of human genius, wisdom 
and experience. 

'* It embraces works of about forty authors, 
representing the extremes of societ}^, from the 
throne of the king to the boat of the fisherman. 
It was written during a long period of sixteen 
centuries — on the banks of the Nile, in the desert 
of Arabia, in the Land of Promise, in Asia Mi- 
nor, in classical Greece, and in imperial Rome. 


It commences with the creation and ends with 
the g-lorification — after describing- all the inter- 
vening" stages in the revelation of God and the 
spiritual development of man. It uses all forms 
of literary composition. It rises to the highest 
heig-hts and descends to the lowest depths of hu- 
manity. It measures all states and conditions of 
life. It is acquainted with every g-rief and every 
woe. It touches every chord of sympathy. It 
contains the spiritual biography of every human 
heart. It is suited to every class of society, and 
can be read with the same interest and profit by 
the king and the beggar, by the philosopher and 
the child. It is universal as the race, and reaches 
beyond the limits of time into the boundless re- 
gions of eternity. . . . 

"It speaks to us as immortal beings on the 
highest, the noblest, and most important themes 
^7hich can challenge our attention, and with an 
authority that is absolutely irresistible and over- 
whelming. It can instruct, edify, warn, terrify, 
appease, cheer and encourage as no other book. 
It seizes man in the hidden depths of his intel- 
lectual and moral constitution, and goes to the 
quick of the soul, to that mysterious point where 
it is connected with the unseen world and with 
the great Father of spirits. 


"It acts like an all-penetrating- and all-trans- 
forming- leaven upon every faculty of the mind 
and every emotion of the heart. It enrichens the 
memor}-; it elevates the reason; it enlivens the 
imag-ination; it directs the judgment; it moves 
the affections; it controls the passions; it quick- 
ens the conscience; it streng-thens the will; it 
kindles the sacred flame of faith, hope and char- 
ity; it purifies, ennobles, sanctifies the whole 
man, and bring-s him into living- union with God. 

" It can not onh' enlighten, reform and improve, 
but reg-enerate and create anew, and produce 
effects which lie far beyond the power of human 
g-enius. It has light for the blind, strength for 
the weak, food for the hungry, drink for the 
thirsty. It has a counsel in precept or example 
for every relation in life, a comfort for every sor- 
row, a balm for every wound. 

"Of all the books in the world, the Bible is 
the only one of which we never tire, but which 
we admire and love more in proportion as we use 
it. Like the diamond, it casts its lustre in every 
direction; like a torch, the more it is shaken the 
more it shines; like a healing- herb, the harder it 
is pressed, the sweeter is its fragrance." 

Chapter X. 

Thk Moral and Religious Valuk to the Statk 
OF THE Bible. 

*'T'was for our lives our laboring- bosoms wrought. 

We turned each scheme, and sharpened every thoug-ht." 

The men and women who learned the principles 
of the Declaration of Independence from the Bible, 
and who, relying- on the protection of Divine 
Providence, defended them: yielding- not in the 
face of untold privations and dangers studied it 
as the true interpreter of civil life, its duties and 
privileg-es. They learned in it that God had made 
of one blood all nations, that He was no respecter 
of persons. 

As citizens the Bible — which neither analyzed, 
defended nor opposed any system of faith in set 
phrase, but which g-ave men knowledg-e of and 
love for God, and taug-ht them the nature of their 
civil, social and domestic duties — was an object of 
study, meditation and affection. Their g-eneral 
sentiment was, that the Scriptures present a per- 


feet rule for the direction and g-overnment of all 
persons, in all the duties which they are to per- 
form to God and humanity, as well in families 
and the commonwealth, as in matters of the 

Hence we find a foundation of Bible truth un- 
derlying- the National Constitutions, Declarations, 
Ordinances and State Constitutions. And since 
nothing- better has been found, a "frequent recur- 
rence to fundamental principles is absolutely neces- 
sary to the preservation of the blessings of liberty." 
And each rising- g-eneration needs industriously to 
study, ponder and practice the religion of the 
State as found in the Bible, for "the organic in- 
stitutions and maxims by which a people have 
risen to greatness, are never compromised with 

The tenets of political religion should be few 
and simple, but they should be diligently taught 
in the Nation's schools. No one understood this 
better than did Washington, who ever speaks to 
us through his Farewell Address. He says: 

"Of all the dispositions and habits which lead 
to political prosperity, religion and morality are in- 
dispensable supports. In vain would that man claim 
the tribute of patriotism who should labor to sub- 
vert these great pillars of human happiness, these 

88 the: MORAI. and RHIvIGIOUS vai,ue) 

firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The 
mere politician, equally with the pious man, oug-ht 
to respect and cherish them. A volume could not 
trace all their connection with public and private 
felicity. Let it simply be asked, where is the secu- 
rity for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense 
of relig-ious obligation desert the oaths which are 
the instruments of investig-ation in courts of justice? 
And let us with caution indulge the supposition that 
morality can be maintained without relig-ion. What- 
ever may be conceded to the influence of refined 
education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and 
experience both forbid us to expect that national 
morality can prevail in exclusion of relig-ious prin- 

"It is substantially true that virtue or morality 
is a necessary spring- of popular g-overnment. The 
rule indeed extends with more or less force to every 
species of free g-overnment. Who that is a sincere 
friend to it, can look with indifference upon attempts 
to shake the foundation of the fabric? 

"Promote then, as an object of primary impor- 
tance, institutions for the g-eneral diffusion of knowl- 
edg-e. In proportion as the structure of a g-overn- 
ment g-ives force to public opinion, it is essential 
that public opinion should be enlightened." 

This power of self-g-overnment g-ets its vitality 
from principles taug-ht in the Bible. The alter- 
native is the power of the bayonet, of force, with 
its injustice, oppression and humiliation. 

The Relig-ion of the Constitution and the Pub- 


lie Schools is simple. It is expressed in the words, 
"Thou Shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy 
heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy 
streng-th, and with all thy mind, and thy neig-h- 
bor as thyself." This principle bring-s prosperity, 
safety, joy and peace wherever it operates. To 
it the world is indebted for whatever of rig-ht- 
eousness has exalted and blessed it. 

An indefinite way of using- the word "religion" 
has resulted in serious mistakes. Webster g-ives 
three distinct meaning's to the word, of which 
the first is the general meaning: "The recogni- 
tion of God as an object of worship, love and 
obedience." The second, a restricted meaning: 
"Any S3'stem of faith or worship." The third, 
still more limited: "The rites or services of re- 
ligion." The religion of the State is described 
in the first definition. The religion of organiza- 
tions for spiritual, moral and ethical purposes, in 
the second. The ceremonies and outward forms 
of these organizations, in the third. Three per- 
sons conversing on the relation of religion to the 
State, the first having in mind religion in its 
broadest, national sense, the second using the 
word as applied to various religious organizations, 
and the third meaning its external forms and 
customs, would certainly make no progress toward 


reaching- truth. Such profitless discussions too 
often occur. 

Relig-ion in the sense of creeds, doctrines and 
ceremonies belongs to the church; but religion in 
the sense of high character and good citizenship 
belongs also to the State, and should be empha- 
sized in her public schools. Our Nation carefully 
separated itself from all connection with distinct 
church organizations; but with equal care, by 
many words and acts, as, for instance, in the or- 
der of Congress for the importation of Bibles in 
1777, in Article Third of the Ordinance of 1787, 
through the spirit and letter of its National and 
State Constitutions, treaties, laws, judicial rulings 
and proclamations, it ordained that Biblical relig- 
ion should be fundamental to the life of the na- 
tional government. 

Notice a few provisions of our National Consti- 
tution. Its preamble states its objects to be — 
union, justice, peace, protection, the prosperity 
and happiness of the people, and the blessings of 
liberty under law. It sounds like the songs of 
the angels, "On earth peace, good will toward' 

The oath — which is ordered in three places in 
the Constitution proper, and in one place in one 
of its amendments (art. 1, sec. 3, cl.6; art. 2, sec. 


1, cl.7; art. 6, cl.3), is a solemn appeal to the God 
whose attributes are revealed in the Bible. 

The first article of the Constitution recog-nizes 
one of the commandments of the Bible as a stand- 
ard for national guidance in the words "Sundays 
excepted" (art. 1, sec. 7). 

Article 7th names the two dates which are of 
special importance to the people of the United 
States, as follows: "Done in convention by the 
unanimous consent of the States present, the 17th 
day of September, in the year of our Lord one 
thousand, seven hundred and eig^hty-seven, and of 
the Independence of the United States of America 
the twelfth." This article makes the date of the 
constitution twofold. First, in "the year of our 
Lord," September 17th, 1787. Second, "in the 
year of our Independence the twelfth." These 
dates were not incorporated into the Constitution 
solely for the sake of compljang- with general 
usag-e. The Constitution was selecting- forms and 
rules for the g-uidance of our Nation. To say 
that Christianity was not acknowledg-ed in the 
org-anic law of the Constitution by the first men- 
tioned date is to say also, that the Independence 
of the United States is not recognized by the 
second. The article 7th, incorporating "the year 
of our Lord" into the Constitution, explicitly 

92 th:^ moral and rkivIGious valuk 

honors the date of the birth of the Lord of the 
Bible, as of the same importance to the people as 
the 4ate of our National Independence. 

It is not the province of the Government and 
its Constitution to explain the nature of "our 
Lord,'' to compel belief in Biblical inspiration or 
to issue a commentary on the Bible; yet, in order 
to understand the meaning- of official documents, 
our American school children must read the Book. 
If they read of what Rosseau calls the " sv^eetness 
and purity" in the manner of the "sacred person- 
ag-e" whose history is found in it, of the "affect- 
ing- gracefulness" of His delivery, of the "sub- 
limity" of His maxims, of the " prof ound wisdom 
of His discourses," of the " subtlety," of the "pres- 
ence of mind," and of the "truth" in His replies, 
and of the g-reat "command over His passions," 
they will know intelligently why the date of His 
birth is used as the date of the United States 
Constitution, and why the Bible is the Nation's 
Book for instruction in fundamental righteousness. 

Should inquiry be made about the prohibition 
of a religious test in the Constitution, and the 
meaning of its first amendment, a satisfactory 
explanation from the highest authority is at hand. 

I. The prohibition of a religious test as a qual- 
ification for office^ as interpreted by Justice Storey, 


"Is desig-ned to cut off ever}^ pretense of an alli- 
ance between the Church and the State in the ad- 
ministration of the National Government." 

II. Concerning- the first amendment to the Con- 
stitution, which is — 

" That Congress shall make no law respecting- an 
establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free 
exercise thereof," Justice Storey continued: 

"The same policy which introduced into the Con- 
stitution the prohibition of any religious test, led to 
this more extended prohibition of the interference 
of Congress in religious concerns. 

" We are not to attribute this prohibition of a na- 
tional and religious establishment to an indifference 
to religion in general, and especially to Christianity 
(which none could hold in more reverence than the 
framers of the Constitution), but to a dread by the 
people of the influence of ecclesiastical power in 
matters of government. 

"An attempt to level all religions, and to make it 
a matter of state policy to hold all in utter indiffer- 
ence, would have created universal disapprobation 
if not universal indignation." 

Of this amendment Bishop Spalding writes: 

"This amendment was made not for the destruc- 
tion but for the protection of religion, by men who 
believed in religion. What true American would 
not resent as an insult the imputation that ours is a 
godless nation?" 

Illustrations could be indefinitely continued. 

Amid the momentous, though simple Inaugural 

ceremonies of our Chief Executive, the presence of 

our Nation's Book has a profound meaning, which 

should be understood by the people, and will be 


if kept before them in their school days. 


Give Bible Gems to the children in school, en- 
grave them upon their hearts and allow them 
their natural effect, and as adult life approaches 
they will seek the Book for doctrine, for reproof 
and instruction. Finding- themselves face to face 
with difficult, perplexing- questions — upon the right 
solution of which the welfare of families, commu- 
nities and nations depend — they will naturally turn 
to the Bible for lig-ht. 

Suppose they may be thrust into the considera- 
tion of all the practical questions forced upon a 
nation by war. No where can more helpful in- 
formation be found. While the Scriptures teach 
that war is offensive to God, they also show that 
it has a place in the economy of g-overnments, to 
be resorted to under certain circumstances, and 
and throw lig-ht upon every possible phase of the 
subject. They speak of volunteers; militarj^ ad- 
venturers; cavalry; offensive and defensive armor 
and equipment; of signals; military machines; 
trumpets; of provisions for war; of muster; dis- 
banding; military movements; marches and en- 
campments; of strategy; tactics; councils of war; re- 
connoiter; surprises; ambuscades; panics; pursuits; 
flights and victories. The Bible gives humane 


and sensible words concerning- sieges threatened, 
established or raised; incidents connected with 
famine occasioned by war; the demand for tribute; 
mishaps; casualties arising- from exhaustion of 
troops; from want of food or fatigue. It speaks 
of the treatment of prisoners of war and of dead 
enemies; of the spoils of war; sometimes not ac- 
cepted; sometimes forbidden; sometimes "accepted 
and taken; and sometimes recovered or divided. 
The military virtues, discretion; magnanimity; 
courage; and vices, fear; cowardice; boasting; vile 
personal practices are presented. Conquests; dis- 
sensions; devastations; disarmament; negotiations; 
alliances; submission after defeat; all are brought 
helpfully to the readers attention. It sounds the 
note of triumph, " though wars rise against me," 
when God guides the battle. 

All right-minded citizens, after looking into the 
subject, must necessarily agree on the importance 
of the daily reading in the public schools from 
the sacred Scriptures. The banishment of the 
Bible from these nurseries of learning and citizen- 
ship, would assuredly be the precursor of the Na- 
tion's decline and fall as its use marks the period 
of her prosperity and glory. 

Chapter XI. 

Questions Considered. 

Question I. How should opponents of Bibee 
kindness. If they have an averag-e amount of in- 
tellig"ence, g-ood sense and reason, most of them 
can be won over to favor careful use of the Bible 
in schools. After taking- a broad view of the case 
they would as quickly vote to banish the sun from 
our universe as the Bible from the schools. 

As every one knows — 

"Reading- the Bible is no more an interference 
with relig-ious belief than is the reading- of the My- 
tholog-y of Greece or Rome an interference with a 
religious belief or an affirmance of the Pagan creeds. 
A chapter of the Koran might be read, yet it would 
not be an affirmation of the truth of Mohammedan- 
ism or an interference with religious faith." — C. J. 
Shaw, Sherman v. Charleston, 8 Cush., 165. 

Still, here and there persons may be found who 
do object to Bible reading in schools. In a commu- 
nity of average intelligence one parent in a hun- 
dred might object to Bible reading in schools, but 


not one in a hundred of these would be so want- 
ing- in fairness and courtesy as to insist upon dic- 
tating- Bible exclusion to the large majority favor- 
ing its use. They would scorn the injustice, and 
appreciate the fact that the removal of Bible read- 
ing- for the pleasure of one or two per cent, of 
the patrons of the schools would be improper. 
Such conduct would be like that of the fabled 
"dog in the manager," which neither partook of 
the hay himself nor allowed the hungry oxen to 
eat it. 

How pitiful would be the sight should our Na- 
tion — in the person of a few of its citizens, in 
forgetfulness of its g-reat inheritance, its Constitu- 
tion, its proclamations, treaties, laws and customs 
— turn propagandist and revolutionist for the pur- 
pose of casting out the Bible, to which it is in- 
debted for whatever prosperity and distinction it 
has g-ained! Reasonable minorities should receive 
reasonable concessions, but when they order law 
and the majority aside, demanding- conformity to 
their wishes, they become un-American despots, 
changing- our government from a republic to an 

Conscientious scruples of the humblest must be 
respected, and a cheerful excuse from participating- 
in what is regarded as sinful, should be granted 


to anj and every individual, so far as possible 
and reasonable. 

The relation of minorities to majorities in re- 
reg-ard to Bible reading- in schools, however, is 
not g-reatly different from the same relation on 
less important subjects. A man must allow the 
right of way throug-h valued property when the 
interests of many demand it. He must remove 
his home even when the public good requires it. 
No one citizen has rights superior to those of the 
many, much less superior to those of the founda- 
tion principles of the State, which, as nearly as 
it is possible to make them do so, embody the 
wisdom of all the people. Some object to the 
taking of oaths, and a solemn affirmation is al- 
lowed. So persons objecting to Bible reading for 
conscience sake, are excused from participating in 
the exercise. However, judicial oaths and Bible 
reading in schools continue in use. 

It is not the province of schools to cultivate a 
weak and sensitive condition of mind, which will 
not give candid attention to reading, the substance 
of which it does not indorse, provided it is neither 
puerile, impure or blasphemous. The scholarly 
way is to know what the Bible is and teaches, and 
then to act in the light of such knowledge. Pa- 
triots generally understand that the life and health 


of the nation cannot be preserved without some 
knowledg-e of and respect for Bible truth; but the 
children of those who do not so reg-ard the sub- 
ject are excused from sharing- in the exercise. 

Bible reading- in the schools is held to be essen- 
tial by a majority of the people of the United 
States. Their consciences, as well as those of 
minorities, are justly dealt with in schools not 
where Bible reading- is prohibited but where it is 
allowed, with excuse to persons conscientiously 
objecting- to participate in it. In that case all 
opinions are respected and national honor is main- 

Question II. Is Bible reading, without note 
OR comment, sectarian instruction? With the 
exception of only five or six, all the States in our 
country permit, encourag-e or require Bible read- 
ing- in part or all of their public schools. Many 
or all of these States prohibit sectarian instruc- 
tion. Here we have, practically, the decision of 
the country, that Bible reading- in schools is not 
sectarian. Six of the Supreme Courts of the 
States have spoken to that effect — one only to the 
contrary. The States which approve Bible read- 
ing- in schools include those that are richest in 
population, educational privileges, morality, and 


in all that g-oes to make life worth living-. Their 
laws ag-ainst sectarian instruction do not conflict 
with Bible reading in schools. The sectarianism 
with which the Book is sometimes charged is not 
in the Book itself, but possibly in the mind which 
professes to have discovered it. 

The fact that our Nation takes its foundation 
principles from the same volume that g-ives life 
to many relig-ious denominations no more makes 
Bible reading in schools sectarian, than securing 
family supplies at the same depot of distribution 
changes Ethiopians into Caucasians. 

Question III. Is the Bible the same in all 
VERSIONS? It is essentially the same in all ver- 
sions ever made by competent translators with an 
honest intent to reproduce the original. Take it 
in any one of its versions into the hundreds of 
tongues through which it speaks today, and you 
find it in all saying the same thing-s about man, 
the same things about God. Minor discrepancies, 
superficial differences, will be seen as a matter of 
course, since thought is free, and no two minds, 
as no two bodies, were ever exactly alike. But 
notwithstanding- these differences there is essential 
unity in all translations. 


Question IV. Should the sacked books of 


SCHOOLS? It is unscholarly to bar the entrance 
of an}^ truth which knocks for admission at the 
door of our consciousness. Choice quotations from 
any source are welcomed and utilized by teachers. 
But for every thing- there is a place and a time. 
American children, with propriety, love and salute 
the "Stars and Stripes," and study the meeming- 
of its colors and symbols earlier and oftener than 
they do the flags of other nations. The children 
of Eng-land, France, and of every land, doubtless, 
know and honor chiefl}^ their own national em- 
blems. For similar reasons wise instructors will 
lead their pupils to give special separate consid- 
eration to the Book which makes the people of 
the United States "the most enlightened and 
richest portion of the human race." 

Question V. Are the decisions of state and 


SCHOOLS? The decisions of State and local courts, 
with rare exceptions, have vindicated Bible read- 
ing in schools. The Supreme Courts of Maine, 
Massachusetts, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, and West 
Virginia have decided in favor of it. The noted 


Cincinnati and Wisconsin cases, in the lower 
courts, were decided in favor of Bible reading-. 
The Supreme Court of Ohio, in reversing- the 
decision of the Superior Court of Cincinnati, threw 
the question of Bible reading- in schools out of 
the case, in the following words: "There is no 
question before us of the wisdom or unwisdom of 
having- the Bible in schools or of withdrawing- it 
therefrom."— 23 O., p. 238. The judge stated that 
the case was "merely or mainly a question of the 
court's right to interfere in the management and 
control of the public schools of the State.'' — 23 
O,, p. 238. The decision rendered was, "that the 
courts have no power to interfere." — 23 O., p. 245. 
If this precedent had been followed in the Su- 
preme Court of the State of Wisconsin she would 
now have had Bible reading in such schools as 
desire it, for her lower court decided that the ac- 
tion of the school board was not to be interfered 
with. The Supreme Court of Wisconsin stated 
that there was no precedent for its decision, and 
further^ Justice J. Lyon, in his opinion in the 
Kdgerton case, said: " No more complete code of 
morals exists than is contained in the New Testa- 
ment, which reaffirms and emphasizes the moral 
obligations laid down in the Ten Commandments." 
The Judge previously stated that "much of it 


(the Bible) has great historical and literary value." 
— Decision of the Supreme Court of the State of 
Wisconsin. — Justice J. Lyon. 

The g-eneral acknowledgment of the supreme 
place that the Bible occupies in everj^ department 
of government, when moral questions require set- 
tlement, reflects favorably upon the intelligence 
and integrity of our officers of justice. 

Question VI. Does reading the Bible in the 


RELIGION? A place of religious worship, from a 
technical point of view, is " a house or room se- 
questered for that purpose, and not to be for any 
temporal use whatever." A teacher of religion, 
technically^ speaking, is a pastor, preacher, priest 
or other person whose principal business is to 
catechize, instruct or exhort youth and adults in 
the theory and practice of some system of faith 
or worship. Reading the Bible statedly in homes, 
schoolrooms, or legislative halls does not make 
them "places of worship." 

Question VII. When Scriptural explanations 


PURSUED? The restriction, " without note or com- 
ment," for Bible reading in schools, requires the 


reference of the questioner to parent, g-uardian or 
relig"ious instructor for the meaning* of texts which 
admit of denominational interpretations. 

Question VIII. Ark Roman CathoIvICS skkk- 


That there, have been times and places in which 
Roman Catholics have opposed Bible reading" in 
the schools of the United States will not be de- 
nied. Some have been unfriendly to the schools 
themselves, but Roman Catholics g-enerally are 
not hostile to the public schools of the United 
States. They regard them as important factors 
in the protection of our nation's interests. Bible 
reading in the public schools is looked upon with 
favor by many of them, and the question of ver- 
sion surely can be reconciled. Such being- the 
prevailing views of leaders in the church, they are 
more and more fully received by the general mem- 

The fundamental importance of public schools 
in our country is established beyond profitable 
discussion. The Catholic people g-enerally con- 
cede their necessity. 

The Archbishop of St. Paul says: 

*' Palsied be the hand uplifted for their over- 
throw," adding-, "Can I be suspected of enmity to 
the State school . . . because I tell of defects 


which, for the ver^' love of the State school I seek 
to remed}'? The tide of irrelig-ion. This is my 
grievance against the State schools today." 

Bishop Phelan thinks it would be a great mis- 
fortune should the public schools be destroj-ed. 

Bishop Hortsman calls it calumny to assert that 
any bishop or priest in the United States desires 
the overthrow of the public school system. 

Hig^h officials of the Catholic church favor the 
custom of Bible reading-. Cardinal Satolli, in a 
letter dated Washing-ton, D. C, March 6, 1895, 

"It gives me sincere pleasure to see that day by 
day the persuasion is spreading that education of 
the young, without some definite element of moral- 
ity and religion, must result in failure so far as the 
real usefulness of education is concerned.'' 

_ Cardinal Gibbons, called by Archbishop Ireland, 
*'the most loyal co-laborer of the Pope of Rome, 
the American of Americans," when his opinion 
was sought upon the subject of Bible reading in 
the public schools, in his own beautiful handwrit- 
ing, replied as follows: 

" I beg respectfully to acknowledge the receipt of 
your letter of the 9th instant and the accompanying 
papers, which relate to a movement already in pro- 
gress of securing to the children of the public schools 
some education in the principles of religion. 

"Indeed, I think that no child ought to be allow- 
ed to grow up in ignorance of such principles, which 
are every day demonstrated to be necessary to the 


well-being-, not only of individuals, but of society 
and g-overnments themselves. 

' ' Tbe men and women of our day who are educated 
in the public schools will, I am sure, be much better 
themselves, and will also be able to transmit to their 
children an inheritance of true virtue and deep moral- 
ity if, at the school, they are brought to a knowledg-e 
of Biblical facts and teaching-s. A judicious selec- 
tion of Scripture reading's, appropriate presentation 
of Scripture incidents, meditation or reflection on 
the passag-es read and presented, cannot but contrib- 
ute, in my opinion, to the better education of the 
children of our public schools, and exercise a healthy 
influence on society at larg-e, since truest principles 
of morality and relig-ion will be silently instilled 
while instruction is imparted in branches of human 

' ' Faithfully yours in Christ, 


This letter, as must be seen, contains a definite 
approval of Bible reading- in public schools. 

Later, throug-h his secretary, the Cardinal sent 
a list of selections from the Bible suitable for 
"Reading-s for Schools," which, in connection 
with nine other lists received from eminent clerg-y- 
men of different denominations, was used in the 
preparation of the volume of Scripture gems, 
which was issued in the spring of 1896, by the 
Educational Union of Chicago, under the title, 
*' Readings from the Bible, Selected for Schools." 

Rt. Rev. John J. Keane wrote concerning this 


*' It seems to me that whoever appreciates the part 
which relig-ion ought to have in the training- of the 
young-, and whoever therefore believes that religion 
ought to be an active influence in the schools, must 
cordially- sympathize with the motive which prompt- 
ed this book. I must, however, be permitted to say 
in all candor that I do not consider it by any means 
a sufficient relig'ious influence for the great purpose 
in view. But these extracts from the Bible, although 
very inadequate for the great object in view, are a 
pointer and a step in the right direction; and I am 
convinced that no child can receive anything but 
good impressions from their perusal." 

Another eminent prelate wrote: 

" I feel that the movement is of itself so merito- 
rious that it will make its own way, as it is doing." 

Catholic priests and laymen have expressed their 
sympathy with this movement, whose names are 
in honor in the church. Among the Chicago lay- 
men are Hon. Washington Hessing, since deceased, 
Col. W. P. Rend, Gen. Geo. W. Smith, and Wm. 
Amberg. Noble women in the church, of thorough 
education and practical experience, such as KHza 
Allen Starr, approve the work. 

With discrimination the Catholic Reading Circle 

Review speaks of the "Readings from the Bible." 

Space allows us to quote only a few lines: 

" It has the approval, if such be the right word, 
of many persons of various beliefs and of notie, and 
the quotations from Catholic pens would indicate, 
at least, a tacit consent to its use where more can- 
not be expected. It is not much, but it is better 


than none. Better have all taught some moral and 
religious truths than to leave the system entirely 
commercial in tone and spirit. Such, we imagine, 
are the thoughts of many Catholic readers." 

The sainted Cardinal Manning wro'te: "I rejoice 
that it (the Bible) is read in the Board Schools 
of England." 

On the subject of version Pope Leo XIII, in his 

celebrated Encyclical on the Bible, issued in 1894, 

referring to the version of the Bible universally 

accepted by the church, adds: 

' ' Neverthless we do not wish to say that no ac- 
count must be taken of other versions, which the 
Christians of the early ages adopted with eulogy, 
especially those of the primitive texts." 

Near the close of his Encyclical he quotes, 
*' Blessed are they that search His testimonies, 
that seek Him with the whole heart," — Ps. 118: 2. 

Judge Prendergast says that the jewels of di- 
vine truth are the same in the King James version 
as in the Douai. 

The learned Bishop Geddes, himself a trans- 
lator, called the King James or common version, 
most excellent for accuracy, fidelity, and the 
strictest attention to the letter of the text. 

The New York "Tablet" emphasizes the con- 
viction of many of the clergy and laity when it 
states: "We object less to the reading of King 


James Bible even in schools than we do to the 
exclusion of all religious instruction." 

Pope Pius the Sixth, in April, 1778, wrote to the 
Archbishop of Florence, who had just issued a 
new translation of the Scriptures in Italian: 

*'You judg-e exceeding-ly well that the faithful 
should be excited to the reading- of the Holy Scrip- 
tures. For these are the most abundant sources 
which oug-ht to be left open to every one to draw 
from them purit}^ of morals and of doctrine, to erad- 
icate the errors which are so widely disseminated 
in these corrupt times. This you have seasonably 
effected, as you declare, by publishing- the Sacred 
Writing-s in the lang-uage of your country, suitable 
to every one's capacity." 

For this work the Pope bestows upon the Arch- 
bishop his highest applause and the Apostolic 

The Plenary Council of 1884, at Baltimore, on 
the subject of Bible reading, states that "the 
most highlv valued treasure of every familj-, and 
the one most lovingly made use of, should be the 
Holy Scriptures." 

"The Sacred Heart Review, Boston, commends 
the custom of daily reading a chapter in the Bible." 

But, "of what avail" (asks Cardinal Gibbons) 
"is a mother's toil if the seeds of faith she has 
planted attain a sickly growth in the cheerless at- 
mosphere of a schoolroom, from which the sun of 
religion is rigidly excluded?'' 


By placing- the words "A Christian Education 
is the g-reatest treasure," over the entrance to the 
Catholic Educational Exhibit at the World's Fair, 
the Catholic Church of America made an informal 
pledg-e to the assembled nations that she would 
not favor Secular Instruction only in the public 
schools. These preceding- expressions from her 
leading thinkers illustrate the noble manner in 
which she is fulfilling this promise. 

The Bible — containing- instruction essential to 
good citizenship: the Bible, respected and loved by 
the people — was incorporated into the very essence 
of the public school system at its birth; and through- 
out all the history of these schools, to the present 
time, it retains a vital connection with them in 
the earlier settled and most populous parts of our 

The sentiments of leaders in the church, which 
appear in this paper, are her glory; and, as they 
come to the knowledge of the people throughout 
the leng-th and breadth of the land, they will 
more and more fully become their guide. For the 
sake of national integrity and of young humanity, 
less favored than her own children, the church 
unites with American patriots of every name for 
the removal of one of the causes of vice and crime, 
by commending the maintenance of the time 


honored custom of Bible reading- in the public 

Question IX. What is the wrong of ex- 
cluding Bible Reading from schools? The 
reply to this question is manifold. This whole 
book is directly or indirectly an answer to it; 
still a few more words on the subject may be of 
value. The exclusion of Bible reading- from 
schools is a great injustice to the pupils. The 
Bible honors and befriends innocent childhood. 
It is unequaled as its instructor, g-uide and pro- 
tector. In the description of a scene in a court 
room of France, taken from an article in the Cath- 
olic World for December, 1896, those who with- 
hold from school children a knowledg-e of practical 
Bible truth are accused of fearful sin. The cul- 
prit is a youth of seventeen; the lawyer, pleading- 
in extenuation of the crime, speaking- of the ab- 
sence of religious training in the schoolroom, says: 

'' Who told him there was a God, a future justice? 
Who spoke to him of his soul, of the respect due his 
neighbor, of the love of his fellowmen? When did 
we teach him the law of God, " Thou shalt not kill? 
We left that soul to its soil instincts; that child 
grew like a young beast in the desert alone, in that 
society w^hich is now ready to strike the tiger, when 
at the proper time it should have clipped his tal- 
ons and calmed his ferocity. It is you, gentlemen, 
whom I accuse; you, civilized and refined, who are 


not barbarians; you moralists, wbo lead the full 
orchestra of atheism and pronographj, and are not 
surprised that you are answered by crime and loss. 
Condemn my client, it is your right; but I accuse 
you, it is my duty." 

Will not the authorities in charg-e of our public 
schools merit a similar arraignment if they com- 
mit a similar sin? 

The overwhelming- majority of the prisoners in 
our jails and penitentiaries are said to have had 
the intellectual training of the public schools. 

For want of its light and comfort with Mrs. 
Browning, one may hear "the chil'd's sob in the 
silence," which will bring a deeper curse "than 
the strong man in his wrath." 

Many "hear the children weeping," 

* * * 
'lire the sorrow comes with years. 

They are leaning their young heads against their mother's, 

And that cannot stop their tears. * * * 

They look up, with their pale and sunken faces, 

And their look is dread to see. 

* * * 
How long! how long O cruel Nation, 

Will you stand to move the world on a child's heart. 
Stifle down with a mailed heel its palpitation, 
And tread onward to your throne amid the mart." 

Temporary advantage gained by ignoring the 
rights of children to know the truths of the Bible, 
and to know that they come from the Bible, will 
only be a storehouse for whirlwinds of judgment 


and fiery indig-nation, from which they will at 
sometime burst forth with unlooked for fury. 

Exclusion of Bible reading- from schools is a 
g-reat injustice to the parents, guardians and teach- 
ers of the children, who have chiefly the improv- 
mcnt of their wards at heart. True, they want 
them to be versed in the rudiments of reading, 
writing, and arithmetic, but far more do they de- 
sire their conformity to God's will in all that is 
true, honest, lovely, and of good report. 

Exclusion of the Nation's Book from the Na- 
tion's schools is chiefly and inexcusably an indig- 
nity to the Nation itself; an injustice which toler- 
ated will undermine the strong foundations of our 
prosperity. The Nation hands to educators its 
money, with an order for good citizenship; and 
the first duty of all, who in any degree control 
the character of public school instruction, should 
be to guard with vigilance the essential aids to it. 

Remove from the common schools the Bible, the 
common, supreme standard of morals throughout 
Christendom, and the result would be ominous 
enough. With a prophetic imagination the poet 
alread}^ sees such a horror, and asks: 

"When the land is young- no longer, but grown old in 

chronic sins; 
When the strife of class with classes both for bread and 

breath begins; 


When the poor shall swarin with riot, and the magic 

checks of trade 
Stretch between the hungry worker and the work his 

hands have made; 
When the social vultures thicken, and the strong the 

weak devour; 
When the corpses of the people strew the stairways up 

to power; 
When loud faction sends its foxes blazing through the 

standing corn; 
From the firebrands of the furies — who shall save a world 


Such a revolting- fate is not for us. Our Nation 
has chosen the Word "that shall stand forever," 
for her standard of rig-hteousness; and so long- as 
she continues to exalt it the Nation's Book will 
bring to honor the people of the United States. 

Chapter Xll. 

The Chicago Woman's Educational Union. 

"If we caunot write Epic poems, we will live thein." 

Frances E. Wii.i.ard. 

True heroic lives for the youth of our land, was 
the thought of the patriotic meeting* held at the 
Palmer House, Chicago, Sept. 17, 1890, to con- 
sider the advisability of organizing a society for 
guarding and promoting Bible reading in the 
public schools of Chicago. The call for this 
meeting was signed by sixty-five representative 
women residing in widely separated parts of our 
city and suburbs. 

The then distinguished editor of the Union 
Signal, Mary Allen West, presided at the meet- 
ing, and also at the one held a week later. At 
this second meeting, Sept. 24, (the press reported 
about a thousand women present) the constitu- 
tion of the Educational Union was adopted and 
ofi&cers elected. 

This organization was of noble ancestry in the 
best sense. Its members were from happy, fortu- 

116 THE CHICAGO woman's 

nate homes. Many of them had been identified 
with public schools as pupils, patrons or teachers. 
All, as friends. They came from the class of peo- 
ple that make our g-lad earth brig-hter and our 
country happier. Since its organization the Union 
has been doing- a work whose influence for g-ood 
reaches out from our city in all directions — an 
outline of which will be of public interest. 

In passing, we may stop for a moment to listen: 
for the earth is filled with inspiring memories 
and words of the heroic dead. Our Union has 
furnished its quota of these, even during the few 
brief years of its existence. Among- the first to 
say, "We must organize," was Mrs. Kliza Stras- 
burg-er Miller. She served with distinguished 
efficiency as the first Secretary of the Educational 
Union. From its organization until, with the 
bloom of health still on her brow, she was called 
to the spirit world, her time, her talents and her 
broad philosophical nature, were unweariedly en- 
listed for the highest interests of the public 

Mary Allen West, who was called from earth 
while traveling in Japan, used her influence, her 
v^oice and her pen for the highest interests of the 
public schools, to which (long before), as county 
superintendent of public schools, she gave nine 


years of successful service. Educational Union 
Leaflet No. 3 consists of points from an address 
delivered by her at a large mass meeting- held in 
Chicago, Nov. 9, 1890. Her words were logical, 
persuasive, and earnest. 

Miss Prances E. Willard, in response to an in- 
vitation to attend our preliminary meeting above 
referred to, under date of Sept. 11, 1890, wrote: 

'' I am to be in the Nebraska campaign for consti- 
tutional prohibition when 3'our meeting occurs, but 
send you the assurance of my devoted interest, co- 
operation and prayers. There must be a basis on 
which all believers in Christianity may unite." 

From time to time she gave us a word of coun- 
sel or a benediction, and after the appearance of 
"Readings from the Bible," she wrote of it (Nov. 
10, 1896): 

"It is a blessed book, and one that I shall keep 
on my table for light and leading. I will speak of 
it in the convention (St. Louis), but the best thing 
would be to have it regularly on sale at our head- 
quarters, and to put in the Signal each week a line 
saying: ' Good work for local Unions — to get this 
book into schools.' " 

It is but just to say, that the Nation owes a 
debt of gratitude to the gentlemen, our honorary 
and associate members and others, who are abun- 
dant in labors for our beloved Nation and its pub- 

118 THK CHICAGO woman's 

lie schools. We are glad to mention among- them 
Henry L. Kellogg-, for man}^ years an editor in 
Chicago, who rendered invaluable aid in connec- 
tion with our exhibit at the World's Fair, and about 
a year later was called away to a better land. 

Although the following address was originally 
prepared for a Board of Education in one of our 
large cities, the Educational Union with propriety 
enlarges the scope of it to include the directors 
of all public schools in any part of the United 
States, who do not at present regularly maintain 
Bible reading as an important school exercise. 

Request of the Chicago Woman's Kducational 
Union to the Authorities in Charge of all Schools 
in which the Bible is not read. 

Ladies and Gentlemen: 

Since Bible reading is recognized as the key- 
stone in the arch of the public school system of 
the United States, we esteem it a privilege and 
an honor to present to you a memorial relating to 
the subject. Although in form it consists of 
three separate petitions, in fact it is one request. 
In brief, they ask that portions of the Bible be 
read daily, without note or comment, as an open- 
ing literary or supplementary reading in the pub- 
lic schools. 

It is not a petition for the adoption of any sys- 


tern of religious instruction, or for the establish- 
ment of an opening- season of public worship, but 
rather a request that the pupils of the public 
schools may be put in touch with the one com- 
mon book of Christendom — the first book publish- 
ed after the invention of printing, and at present 
more widely circulated in more languages than 
an}^ other, hundreds of millions of copies having 
been sold in the last century — a book, some knowl- 
edge of which is essential to good citizenship, and 
fundamental to a correct understanding of our 
Constitution and laws. 

For this daily exercise the use of the Chicago 
book, "Readings from the Bible, Selecttd for 
Schools," is recommended. By its adoption a de- 
gree of uniformity will be secured, and the pupils 
will unite in an opening reading or recitation at 
once spirited, broad and elevating. 

The privilege of giving the Bible a helpful and 
an honorable place in the schools must be a great 
pleasure to you, while it will be to the schools 
under your control their crowning glory. 

Chapter XIII. 

Fui.1. Tkxt and Description of Pe;titions. 

The three memorials which are the subject of 
this writing- merit more than a casual notice. 
The first contains the autographs of more than 
fifty-nine thousand persons. The second, an am- 
plification of the first, is numerously signed by 
representative citizens of Chicago. The third is 
endorsed by many assemblies of our people, by 
the presidents of leading clubs and other individ- 
uals. It was prompted by the appearance in 1896 
of the book "Readings from the Bible, Se- 
lected FOR Schools." Accompanying this re- 
quest we present to you the full text of these 
memorials, together with material relating to 
the general subject. Our work in the interest 
of enlightenment and patriotism has been carried 
on for years. It has been conducted in a friendly 
spirit, not only toward those who approve of it 
but toward all. 

Successive Mayors of Chicago and members of 


our Board of Education have been made acquaint- 
ed with the prog-ress of the work. Thousands of 
inquiries concerning- Bible Reading- in Schools, 
addressed chiefly to officers and teachers in the 
United States, have been sent out and g-enerally 
replied to in such a way as to show that Bible 
reading- is essential to schools. This correspond- 
ence has been used for public information in ad- 
dresses and newspapers. Mass meeting-s have 
been held, papers read before Clubs and orther 
org-anizations, in addition to the continuous recep- 
tions in the larg-est building- of the World's Fair, 
in eighteen hundred and ninety-three, which were 
given daily to representatives of the whole earth. 
From information gained through the above 
named and similar methods, it is evident that 
Chicago wants to have the Bible honored in her 
public schools. Persons without church affilia- 
tions wish the pupils of the public schools to 
know it for its historical, literary and moral 
worth. Labor and other Unions, by their repre- 
sentatives, have approved its use. Dr. Carus 
voices their general sentiment by saying: ** Rath- 
er omit Homer, or banish Shakespeare, than the 
history of Israel, the Psalms, and the Gospels." 

The late Thos. H. Huxley writes: *' The Bible is 
written in the noblest and purest English, and 


abounds in exquisite beauties of mere literary form. 
. . . By the study of what otber book could chil- 
dren be so much humanized?" 

Jewish patriots "do not yield to its most de- 
voted lover in reverence for the good book," 
Hence it is not surprising- that they approve of 
the use of choice selections, presenting- to the 
pupils practical thoughts concerning the duties 
and relations of life, which, at the same time, 
place them in touch with the finest literature of 
the world. A Rabbi of our city has pronounced 
every selection in the book, * ' Readings from the 
B1BI.K," save one, undenominational from his point 
of view. Over his name, on one of the memori- 
als, another Rabbi writes: "Moral and ethical 
training should always accompany secular educa- 
tion. I therefore favor the introduction of such 
a book" (a book of Bible Selections), "but the 
instruction must never be of a denominational 
character." One of Chicago's Hebrew lawyers, in 
a long and carefully prepared paper, ably review- 
ed and commended the book, "Readings from 
THE Bible." 

Other church people naturally wish our country 
to maintain vital relations to the Book of Books. 
The Roman Catholics, following the thought of 
Pope Leo the Thirteenth and other leaders, en- 


courag'o the dissemination of Bible knowledg-e 
among' the common people. 

Cardinal Satolli, at the time when he occupied 
the highest position in the Catholic Church of 
America, expressed sincere pleasure in observing- 
that definite elements of morality and relig-ion 
were more and more reg-arded as essential in edu- 
cation. " The Bible in one hand and the Consti- 
tution of the United States in the other," was his 
strikingly sag-acious message to his people. 

The leading- Cardinal of America, Cardinal Gib- 
bons, stands loyally and unequivocally for Bible 
reading in the schools. His letter on the subject 
to the President of the Educational Union is print- 
ed in Chapter XL, p. 106. 

Archbishops and Bishops commend the book, 
"Readings from the Bible," and the aid given 
to this movement b}^ patriotic Catholic laymen is 
well known. 

The almost universal approval of people of evan- 
gelical churches and other organizations, as well 
as of prominent educators, is a subject of general 


To the Honorable Board of Education of the 
City of Chicago, Petition for the Reading of the 
Bible in the Public Schools: 


Whereas, the Bible is the great fountain of public 
and private morals, and contains the most exalted 
literature ever produced; and whereas, the effect of 
reading- portions of the Holy Scriptures to and by 
the pupils in the public schools, would tend to 
elevate their minds and strengthen their moral 

Therefore the undersig-ned respectfuUly pray that 
an order may be made by your Honorable Board, 
requiring- the reading of the Scriptures at the open- 
ing exercises of each day, in all departments of the 
public schools of Chicago. 

The undersigned regard the claim that such read- 
ing would be an infringement of just personal or 
religious liberty, as wholly destitute of merit, and 
insist that such reading would still leave the mind 
and conscience of every pupil entirely free from any 
improper bias. 

This Petition was presented for signatures at 
the headquarters of the Chicago Woman's Educa- 
tional Union, in the Manufactures and Liberal 
Arts Building of the World's Fair, held in Chi- 
cago in 1893. It was first opened for signatures 
on the Fourth day of July, and was accessible to 
the public during the four remaining months of 
the Fair. All, or nearly all the names, 

Fifty-nine thousand onk hundred and eighty- 
two in number were signed with ink, and ar- 
rang-ed in a form convenient for reference. Hence 
this Memorial forms a permanent album of names 
of patriots from all parts of the world, who are 
interested in the welfare of Chicago. The Memo- 


rial contained pink sheets for the names of guests 
from abroad, blue for adult residents of Chicag"0, 
and white for the names of children. 

Upon walls tastefully draped, under a canopy 
of Stars and Stripes, at the World's Fair Pavilion 
of the Educational Union, hung- the portraits of 

John Forsythe, D. W. Irwin, 

Grant Goodrich, P. L. Underwood, and 

John V. Farwell, James Otis; 

six of the eight members of the committee that 
drafted the protest of the citizens of Chicago 
against the removal of the Bible from the public 
schools, and presented it to the Board of Educa- 
tion, Oct. 10, 1875. Our walls were also illumin- 
ated with a beautiful original painting, consisting 
of a Bible draped with the United States Flag in 
the foreground, upon which lay an open scroll 
containing the third article of the ordinance of 
1787, as follows: 

" Religion, morality, and knowledge, being neces- 
sary to good government and the happiness of man- 
kind, schools and the means of education shall for- 
ever be encouraged." 

Back a little from the Bible and scroll was pic- 
tured a fine modern school building and the little 
red school house, and in the distance the log 
school building and the primitive tent of years 
ago. Upon a brown background, bordered with 


golden rod, near this painting- hung- a beautiful 
motto, wliich read as follows: 

"Good Citizenship and the Happiness of Mankind 
result from Love to God and Man, as revealed in the 

These sug-g-estive decorations, tog-ether with fine 
portraits of the first presiding- of&cer of the Edu- 
cational Union, Mary Allen West, and of Mrs. 
Mary M. Hobbs, of Chicago; the original copy of 
the First Memorial, signed by 16,000 adult resi- 
dents of Chicago, presented by the Educational 
Union to the Board of Education, Dec. 10, 1890, 
and by their courtesy loaned to us for this occa- 
sion; books, pamphlets, leaflets, photographs, 
tasteful furniture, fresh flowers, and a cheerful 
rug over the serviceable carpet, were the remain- 
ing material attractions of a spot at which many 
a visitor loved to linger. 

"I would not have missed this for anything:" 
or, "This is the most interesting place at the Fair:"* 
or other similar remarks came from the lips of 
many a passerby. "This experience has made an 
optimist of me," said a member of our Union, who 
assisted day after day at our grand reception. The 
almost universal appreciation of the importance of 
Bible reading in schools was a revelation to us 


Professor Viroux, from Paris, France, expressed 
the averag^e views of those who signed the peti- 
tion when he said that all good people should 
unite in such a movement in the interest of mor- 
ality and national righteousness. 

The second memorial was prepared in April, 
1894, at the suggestion of Dr. John Henry Bar- 
rows, by Hon. Charles C. Bonne3% It reads as 

''To THE Educational Authorities in charge 

OF THE Public Schools: 

"The undersigned believe that they express a 
general conviction of the intelligent and patriotic 
public, when they say that there is an urgent need 
of better and more earnest instruction of the rising 
generation in the fundamental principles of morals 
and religion, which are indispensable to the well- 
being of society. 

We also believe that all thoughtful and candid 
persons must admit that there is a very great num- 
ber of children in our country who, if not instructed 
in those principles in the public schools, will not, 
as a matter of fact, be instructed in them at all. We 
must, therefore, choose between such instruction in 
those schools or its absence during the formative 
period of the character and conduct of the child. 

It also appears to us that the experience of the 
last twenty-five years, and the present state of the 
country, render the present a very auspicious time 


for an endeavor to carry into effect, more fully than 
has been done heretofore, the crowning- provision of 
the great ordinance of 1787 — '• that religion, moral- 
ity and knowledge, being necessary to good govern- 
ment and the happiness of mankind, schools and the 
means of education shall forever be encouraged." 

There has been no failure to teach knowledge 
merely. What we need is more efficient instruction 
in the fundamental principles of character and con- 
duct, which are embraced in the general terms of 
religion and morality. Religion, in the sense of 
doctrines and creeds, belongs to the churches; but 
religion in the sense of high character and good 
citizenship, also belongs to a proper system of edu- 

We therefore propose that the question of proper 
instruction in such fundamentals of religion and 
morality, be entirely separated from all other ques- 
tions relating to the system of public schools; and 
that Catholics and Protestants, Jews and Gentiles, 
in a word, all good citizens unite in recommending 
that the reading book, consisting of selections from 
the Sacred Scriptures, in use in the schools of Tor- 
onto, Canada, with the approval of both the Cath- 
olic and Protestant churches, or similar selections, 
be put in use in the public schools of this country 
without delay. 

"As the whole religious world united, without 
objection, in the universal prayer to ' Our Father, 
who art in Heaven,' during the World s Religious 
Congresses of 1893, we believe that all right-minded 


classes of the American people would now agree on 
the daily reading- in the public schools of selections 
fnjm the Sacred Scriptures, and the recitation of 
that prayer, and the two g-reat commandments, on 
which hang- all the law and the prophets; thereby 
fixing- in the minds of the children the vital, spirit- 
ual principles on which g-ood citizenship and the 
future welfare of our country so largely depend." 

The names of a few of the multitudes residing- in 
Chicag-o who personally endorse this comprehensive 
statement of the urg-ent need of the public schools 
are — 

Charles C. Bonney, Orig-inator and President of 
the World's Cong-resses cf the Columbian Exposi- 
tion, author of the paper. 

Dr. Wm. R. Harper, President of the University 
of Chicag-o. 

Dr. Simeon Gilbert, The Advance. 

John B. Strasburg-er, Attorney, Ex-Superintend- 
ent of Schools, and Principal of Hig"h School, South 

Wm. Carey, Member Constitutional Convention of 
Illinois; formerl}^ U. S. District Attorney in Utah. 

Z. S. Holbrook, Proprietor Bibliotheca Sacra. 

Rev. Theodore N. Morrison, Rector of the Church 
of the Epiphau}'. 

Wm. A. Amberg, Ex-President Columbus Club. 

Frances Healy, Ex-Instructor in Chicago Public 

Susan Gale Cooke, Secretary, Board of Lady Man- 
agers of the Columbian Commission. 

Eliza Allen Starr, Artist and Philanthropist. 

Jane Addams, Superintendent Hull House. 

Mrs. Henry Solomon. 


Mrs. Mary B. Little. 

Rev. Dr. Edward P. Goodwin, Pastor First Con- 
greg-ational Church. 

Rev. Dr. John Henry Barrows, Chairman World's 
Parliament of Relig-ions and Pastor First Presbyte- 
rian Church. 

Prof. Samuel Ives Curtiss, Chicago Theological 

Prof. Graham Taylor, Chicago Theological Sem- 

Dr. John M. Coulter, President Lake Forest Uni- 

Hon. W. J. Onahan, Kx-Comptroller City of Chi- 
cago, Member Jury Commission. 

Gen. Geo. W. Smith, Kx-President Union League 

Dr. P. S. Henson, Pastor First Baptist Church, 

Dr. Henry Wade Rogers, President Northwestern 

M. M. Mangasarian, President Society for Ethi- 
cal Culture. 

Rev. Dr. Carlos Martyn, late Pastor Sixth Pres- 
byterian Church, Chicago. 

Rt. Rev. Chas. Edward Cheney, Bishop Reformed 
Episcopal Church, Chicago. 

Rev. Dr. H. W. Thomas, Pastor People's Church, 

Rev. Dr. H. W. Bolton, Pastor South Park Meth- 
odist Episcopal Church, Chicago. 

*C. M. Henderson. 

John V. Farwell, Jr. 

Ezra A. Cook. 

C. H. Case. 

W. P. Rend. 

Marshall Field. 

Edith C. Hancock. 



Rev. Dr. J. h. Witlirow, Pastor Third Presbyte- 
rian Church, Chicag-o. 

Elizabeth Keep Clark. 

Aug-uste Bluthardt. 

*Hon. Washington Hessing", Ex-Postmaster of 
City of Chicago. 

About this time, in April, 1894, Prof. David 
Swing sent a letter to the first Vice President of 
the Educational Union, Mrs. E. Strasburger Mil- 
ler, of which the following is an extract: 

*'It seems to me that a committee — composed of 
Mr. Onahan, Dr. Hirsch, Dr. Barrows, Mr. Bonney, 
and Mrs. Cook — could in two hours select from the 
Bible great passages enough to make a little Chicago 
Bible for our schools. The books of selections I 
have seen are too large and too expensive. A beau- 
tiful little volume could be produced and sold for 
twenty-five cents. The book ought not to be large. 
It should be read over and over until the selections 
are memorized." 

This suggestion by Prof. Swing was submitted 
to Hon. Thos. Brennan, of the Board of Educa- 
tion, who, after reading it, spoke of the propri- 
ety of having professional clergymen, of different 
denominations, make the Scripture selections. 
Thereupon the Educational Union addressed re- 
quests for aid in making the book to thirty-nine 
clergymen, residing in different parts of the coun- 
try. Replies were received from most of them, 
expressing their interest in the work. Ten of 

* Deceased- 


them named selections that would be of especial 
value for such a volume. The names of those 
sending" selections were as follows: 

J. Cardinal Gibbons, Baltimore, Md. 

Dr. Josiah Strong-, New York City, N. Y. 

Prof. Herrick Johnson, D.D., Chicago, Ills. 
Dr. F. W. Gunsaulus, 

Dr. Thos. C. Hall, 

(( n 

Rev. Theo. N. Morrison, 

a a 

Dr. H. W. Thomas, 

a a 

Dr. J. H. Barrows, 

a a 

Pres. C. A. Blanchard, 

Wheaton, " 

Dr. Thos. F. Wrig-ht, 

Boston, Mass. 

From these selections a trial book was made 
and approved by the Educational Union, and by 
them placed in the hands of the Editorial Com- 
mittee named by Prof. Swing, all but one of whom 
accepted of their appointment. Rev. M. M. Man- 
g-asarian and Prof. R. G. Moulton assisted, as also 
did Dr. Thos. C. Hall, Dr. H. W. Thomas and 
others — one of whom, a Hebrew Rabbi, reviewed 
the book and marked every selection in it that was 
denominational in character from his point of view. 
The publishers also did their part, with a desire 
to serve the schools in the most helpful manner 

Completed, the Book, *' Readings from the 
BiBivEJ," is indeed a book of Bible g-ems. Love to 
God and humanity characterize it throughout. 


Twenty or more of its one hundred and fifty 
selections relate exclusively to personal character 
and conduct, and the others do not arg-ue ag-ainst, 
analyze or defend any system of relig-ion in set 
phrase, but tend to fill the mind with the knowl- 
edg'e of the true God, to inspire the heart in His 
service, and prepare it for the proper discharg-e of 
the civil, social and domestic duties of life. The 
book is primarih' intended to teach the morals of 
the Ten Commandments as condensed into the 
two g^reat commandments, and illustrated and 
emphasized by selected passag-es from Old and 
New Testaments. 

Few books, upon their first appearance, are 
greeted with a more cordial welcome than was 
this one. Newspapers at home and throughout 
the country g-ave the "Bible Reader" a merited 
ovation. Its literary merit alone was such "as 
to excite universal admiration." One of the great 
Chicago dailies devoted its first and best columns 
to a review of the contents and excellencies of 
the book for two successive days. 

The appearance of this volume, supplying a 
need that had, as it were, " gone begging for a 
long time," seemed to call for the Third Memo- 
rial, the text of which follows: 


" To the Honorable Board of Education of Chica- 
g-o, Illinois. 
"Ladies and Gentlemen: 

Whereas, The fundamental laws of Illinois re- 
quire in the public schools instruction in that relig-- 
ion, morality and knowledg-e which is necessary to 
good government and the happiness of mankind; 

Whereas, These laws specify the Bible as the 
book containing- the primary elements of that relig- 
ion and morality; and 

Whereas, Portions of the Bible have been and 
are read as an opening exercise in the public schools, 
with no tendency toward the disturbance of the 
constitutional relations of Church and State, in the 
cities of New York, Brooklyn, Boston, Philadelphia, 
and elsewhere, we respectfully petition your Honor- 
able body to have a brief portion from the Bible, or 
from a book of Bible selections, read without note 
or comment, as an opening exercise in the schools 
under your jurisdiction. 

By thus respecting the Book recognized as sacred 
by the laws of the United States and other enlight- 
ened nations, you will faithfully discharge your 
duties as officers of the government, comply with 
the wishes of statesmen, educators and citizens, and 
provide for the Public Schools of Chicago the great- 
est improvement within your power to bestow." 

This Memorial is signed by — 

Lyman J. Gage, Julia A, Ray, 

Thos. B. Bryan, Kmma Dryer, 

M. J. Carroll, Lucy L. Flower, 

Luther Lafiin Mills, Geo. De Wing Wright, 

Chas. Silverman, Marie C. Reniick, 

Elizabeth A. Reed, Helen G. Scott, 

Wm. Penn Nixon, Victor B. Williams, 

E. S. Lacey, Wm. McEvoy, 


Chas. E. Fielden, Edward T. Harper, 

Nora E. Kellog-g-, Jane Addams, 

Florence Kelley, W. Doug-las Mackenzie, 

Mrs. L3^dia Coonly Ward. 

The following- bodies also endorsed this Memo- 
rial by vote: 

Baptist ChurcJtes — Second German, Fourth, Grace. 
First German, Humboldt Park Swedish. Bethel, Mil- 
lard Ave., Oak Park German, Pilgxim Temple, First 
Danish, Lake View, Betham', Englewood, Fourth 
Swedish, Ravenswood. 

Methodist Episcopal Churches — Park Side, Pauli- 
na St., South Park Ave., Ravenswood, Wabash Ave., 
Centenar}-, Mandel, Garfield Boulevard, Union Ave., 
De Kalb St., First, Normal Park, Marie Chapel, 
Batts Mission 77th St., Adams St., Morgan St. Ger- 
man, Jefferson Park German, 47th St. Mission, First 
of South Englewood, M. H. Jackson's Church Max- 
well St., Garfield Park. 

Presbyterian Churches — Belden Ave., West Divi- 
sion, Session of First, Immanuel, Jefferson Park, 
H^'de Park, Scotch Westminster, Eighth, German, 
41st Street, Campbell Park, Calvary, Avondale, 
Tenth, South Side Tabernacle. 

Congregational Churches — First Oak Park, Tab- 
ernacle (two different congregations), Cortland St., 
Leavitt St., Bowmanville, Second South Chicago, 
Covenant, Warren Ave., First, Green St., Hermosa, 
Porter Memorial, Bethlehem, Central Park, Brain- 
erd, Millard, Mont Clare, Grace, Summerdale. 

Miscellaneous — Chicago Commons Woman's Club, 
The National Temperance Hospital and Sanitarium 
Association, 18th Ward Council of Civic Federation, 
which, together with the names of the Presidents 
of the Union League Club, City Press Association, 
the Woman's Club, the Fortnighly Club, the West- 

136 I^UI^Iv TKX'T AND 

End Club, and others whose names are recorded, 
represent the sentiment of our intellig-ent and patri- 
otic people. 

The book, "Rkadings from the^ Bible;," which 
received such a spontaneous general welcome and 
endorsement, was reviewed bj educators and edit- 
ors throughout the country — some bringing out 
one good point, others another. 

A few weeks after its first appearance, on the 
20th of April, 1896, a mass meeting — to which 
representatives of all denominations were invited 
— was held in the auditorium of the First M. K. 
Church of Chicago, for the purpose of welcoming 
the new Chicago Reader. Dr. M. M. Parkhurst, 
Methodist, presided. Rev. J. W. Fifield, Congre- 
gationalist, was Secretary. Dr. J. L. Withrow, 
Presbyterian, and Dr. M. W. Haines, Baptist, spoke 
with persuasive power and eloquence. They were 
followed by Dr. N. H. Axtell, Methodist, who, 
after reading several selections from the new book 
and pointing out some of its excellencies, spoke 
as follows: 

Chapter XIV. 

Address of Dr. N. H. Axtell Concerning Morai, 
Instruction in Schools. 

The diffusion of moral culture is an absolute 
necessity to the existence and prosperity of the 
State. Plutarch puts it in its broadest statement 
when he says, "There has never been a state of 
atheists." Can any historian bring- an exception? 
There has never been a state of atheists. You 
may travel over the world. You may find cities 
without walls, without a king", without a mint, 
without theatres or gymnasiums, but you will 
never find a city without a god, without prayer, 
without oracles, without a sacrifice. Sooner may 
a city stand without foundations than a state 
without a belief in the gods. This is the bond 
of all society — the pillar of all legislation. 

No state can continue existence without vigor- 
ous morals; but this is especially true of a repub- 
lic, dependent upon the intelligence and morals 
of the individual constituents. All past history 


establislies the fact that however intellig-ent a 
people maj be, yet, lacking" the moral element, 
they are unable to sustain a system of self-g-ov- 
ernment, or for long- an existence at all. 

In view of this, the Kng-lish decided in 1842 
that, '*The courts will not sanction any system 
of education in which relig-ion is not included;" 
and that " a scheme of education without relig-ion 
Would be worse than a mockery." 

Justice Shaw says, ** The public school system 
was intended to provide a system of moral train- 

Blackstone says, "Christianity is part of the 
law of Kng-land;" and his American Commentator 
adds, *' We have received the Christian relig-ion as 
part of the common law." The courts have so 
held it to be. 

Webster won the Girard will case on the 
point, " Christianity is the law of the land." Mr. 
Webster says, ' ' Statutes against blasphemy and 
violation of the Sabbath, and others of the same 
effect, proceed on this g-reat broad principle, that 
the preservation of Christianity is one of the 
g-reat and leading- ends of g-overnment. " 

I ought, perhaps to answer a common mistake 
right here. It is, that the separation of Church 
and State in this country has left the State with- 


out rclig-ion, or with nothing- to do with relig-ion. 
Org-anized civil society, the separation of this 
necessary relig-ious impulse, this conviction of 
accountability to God in all relations of life, this 
looking for the supernatural sanction upon doing 
right and frown upon doing- wrong — separation 
from this would be as un-American as un-Chris- 
tian. Nothing could have been farther from the 
thought of the Founders of the Republic. They 
rather thought that they divorced a particular 
form of religious establishment from the State, 
that Christianity in its broadest fullness might 
enter into cordial and eternal marriage with the 
State. The ver}' first amendment acts both ways. 
"Cong-ress shall make no law respecting- an 
establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free 
exercise thereof." 

(1) This recog-nizes religion as an element 
here to stay. In accordance with this, in the 
same Constitution, is the requirement of oaths of 
President and others. In accordance also is the 
establishment of Sabbath rest, chaplaincies, etc. 

(2) Religion might be impaired and injured 
by establishment. So it would have been, being- 
made to include a part, a sect. Now it is broad 
enough to include all the Roman ideal of law, all 
the Jewish idea of purity, and all the Christian- 


idea of grace. It includes the sum of all its 

(3) Relig-ion can be better administered by 
being- free from complication with any sects or 
special creeds. 

(4) "No law shall prohibit the free exercise 
of relig-ion." Christianity as a system is recog- 
nized: for the law securing a rig-ht recognizes the 
legitimacy of that right. The State makes use 
of the moral influence of church and school, and 
grants immunities and g-uarantees, not for what 
the church believes, but for what of safety and 
progress she contributes by making- men moral. 

Confessedly the Bible is the text boot in morals. 
The heathen dammio of Hirosaki, when .the 
school asked for the study of moral philosophy, 
asked, " What is that?" Being told "it is the sci- 
ence of right and wrong-," said, "It must go in." 
When the question came up, "What is the best 
textbook?" a messeng-er was sent to Dr. McClaj^; 
" Well, the best text book is the Christian's Bible;" 
it was said, "Well then, we must have that." 
Heathen though he was forty Bibles were secured 
for that school. 

There are not probably in our sixty-six millions 
of people sixty-six who would think any child 
would receive hurt from hearing-, "Thou shalt 


not steal." "Whatsoever 3-e would that men 
should do unto you, do 3^e even so to them." Or, 
"A man's life consisteth not in the abundance of 
the thing's which he possesseth." No child forg-ets 
the parables, or the story of Joseph. How are 
the utterances of Isaiah or Paul caught upon the 
ears of infancy, and how they ling-er through the 
life, and are the last forgotten in the wanderings 
of old ag-e! No book will take its place — so will 
say Christian, Jew, moralist, and literary critic. 

How true are these words, written by a noble 
Catholic scholar, speaking- of the uncommon beau- 
ty and marvellous English of the King- James 
version of the Bible: 

"It lives on the ear like music that can never be 
forgotten, like the sound of church bells, which the 
convert hardly knows how he can forego. Its felici- 
ties often seem to be almost things, rather than 
w^ords. It is a part of the National mind, and the 
anchor of national seriousness. The memory of the 
dead passes with it. The potent traditions of child- 
hood are stereot3-ped in its verses. The power of 
all the griefs and trials of a man is hidden beneath 
its words. It is the representative of his best mo- 
ments, and all there has been about him of soft, and 
gentle, and pure, and penitent, and good, speaks to 
him forever out of his English Bible. It is his 
sacred thing, which doubt has never dimmed, and 
controvers}^ never soiled. In the length and breadth 
of the land there is not a Protestant with one spark 
of religiousness about him, whose spiritual biogra- 
phy is not in his Saxon Bible." 


M. Cousin, in a report upon public instruction 

in Germany, says: 

"The general system of instruction is based on 
the Bible, as translated by Luther. And every man 
will rejoice in this, for, with three-fourths of the 
population, morality can be instilled only through 
the medium of relig-ion. Luther's forcible and pop- 
ular translation is in circulation from one end of 
Germany to the other, and has greatly aided in the 
moral and religious education of the people." 

This wise man regrets that France had not a 
translation of equal merit. Levasseur, whom 
France has crowned with the honors of the Acad- 
emy, sd^js, "Bible reading has produced about all 
for popular education that has been done for 

If Justice Shaw is correct when he says, "The 
public school was intended to provide a system of 
moral training," we have what is needed, except 
that it lacks in the line of moral training. We 
are told by merchants that the pupils of the schools 
are intellectually well qualified but not morally 
trustworthy. They find two hundred well quali- 
fied for accounts where there is one with sufficient 
integrity. Is not this the want everywhere? The 
heart-fear of ten thousand parents today is, not 
that their sons will not know enough but that 
they may not be quite noble, honest, Christian. 
They realize that the great thing is character. 


It is SO with the nation. It wants her millions 
schooled that she may have wiser men and elect- 
ors, fewer disg-raceful aldermen, fewer tramps, 
fewer crimes. In the swarms of bad men at the 
doors of Congress, at the kitchen doors, and in 
the mobs in the streets, the want is morals rather 
than education. And all morals are founded in re- 
ligion. All relig"ion in this country is therelig^ion 
of our Bible. And if the State needs morals as 
much, or more than it needs intellectual education, 
the State must put into the school what she wants 
in the citizen. The school is the only place the 
State has to learn morals. Our fathers, who 
founded the g-overnment, expected to g-ain moral 
character for her citizens from her schools. And, 
as the Bible is the best text book of Christian 
principles, it should g-o into the schools. 

Reasons accumulate with the prog-ress of our 
great experiment. There is a solution of the 
problems arising- from the conflict of classes in 
society, and that solution is in the principles in- 
culcated in the Bible. It is true that we have 
retrog-raded in some social lines in twenty-five 
years. It is true that we are now asking- for 
*'a kingdom of love" of humanity. It is true 
that we should have " the spring-ing- up of a g-reat 
hope," if we knew the next generation of pupils 


would come out of school well taug-ht in the 
principles of love and righteousness, which alone 
can answer the troubles of tomorrow. 

Bible Reading- elsewhere cannot be an ade- 
quate substitute for Bible Reading- in the Public 

These schools are the only manufactories of 
manhood and morals which the State directly 
controls. If special attention were given to Bible 
reading in churches, Sunday schools, and in fami- 
lies, a part only of the school children could be 
reached, and that indifferently. We need every 
help in morals, and shall not then be too safe. 
Then character grows by line upon line, line upon 
line. When and where it needs prompting it 
should have it. There is no time like the school 
time. Here minds are "wax to receive and mar- 
ble to retain." Here are the temptations needing 
to be met by effectual call to best endeavor. Here 
are the mental openings, and here must be the 
supply. Here are expanding forces if good leaven 
is mixed in. Here are the incidents calling for 
' ' the word in season. " Postponement is opportunity 
lost. You might as well say to a narrow-breasted 
boy at college, "Learn mathematics and Greek 
now, four years hence take exercise and get a 
pair of lungs on you," You might as well tell 


the one feeding* on poisons daily that it is danger- 
ous, but after a few such years he can swallow 
antidotes for a year I The antidotes should go 
with the poisons. Even the few from homes filled 
with a rig-ht atmosphere should not be thrust into 
an atheistic atmosphere at school. 

Such opportune moments shall never come to 
these children later. Now the Bible has a side- 
door entrance. Tomorrow that mind shall be a 
warehouse ag-ainst whose doors shall be piled 
hogsheads of pork, tons of coal, cargoes of fish, 
salt, lumber, or worse — be already in the danger- 
ous class. As Wellington pointed across a school- 
ground and said, "There Waterloo was won," so 
we point to the schools and say, "What the na- 
tion would have in her citizens she must put into 
her schools." The safety of the State demands 
the religious care of the children to save them 
from becoming her dangerous classes. As we 
educate intellect on account of the danger of igno- 
rance, so we must educate in morals that we may 
be delivered from the vicious. 

If it shall be said, the selections may not be 
well made, teachers full of other matters have not 
time to find the best passages, or that the Bible 
is too large or expensive, or not convenient for a 
school book, all these objections are happily re- 


moved in the inexpensive, convenient, carefully 
chosen readings in this wonderful and beautifully 
printed book. 

Now, it being- true that — 

/. Moral culture is an absolute necessity to the 
existence and prosperity of^ the State, and that — 

2. The Bible is the best text book of morals, 
whatever else it may be, and that — 

3. Bible Readings elsewhere cannot be an adequate 
substitute for Bible Readings in the public schools, 
where the State undertakes to educate all her 
children, it follows that — 

4. There shoui^d be the Reading of the Bible 
IN the schools. 

As inconveniences are avoided by this book of 
selections, and as it is peculiarly broad, having- 
the approval of so widel}^ differing- men, let there 
be a broad and g-eneral consent to its use. The 
Bible is always broader than sects. Its g-reatest 
and best teaching-s, almost all, of all g-rades of 
thoug-ht, ag-ree to and love. Then, in ag-reement 
with its g-reat underlying- truths and healing-, let 
us send it into our schools. 

Chapter XV. 

Opinions about "Readings from the Bible, 
Selected for Schools." 

The followinof editorial from "Kennedy's Own," 
Minneapolis, Minn., Februar}-, 1897, shows the 
advance of hitherto adverse thoug-ht toward the 
adoption of sentiments so clearly presented in the 
Welcome to the Chicag"0 Book of "Readings from 
the Bible." 

"The long and bitter warfare that once raged 
around the question of Bible Reading in the public 
schools has ceased. The difference between Jew and 
Gentile, Catholic and Protestant, sectarian and secu- 
1 arist, have been adjusted by a stroke of genius. The 
inspiration came from the late Rev. David Swing of 
Chicago, that sweet evangel who interwove human- 
itarianism and religion in a grand poetic symphony, 
lighting the intellect as with fire from heaven, while 
sweeping with a master-hand the tenderest and deep- 
est chords of our spiritual nature. 

" It was Prof. Swing who in April, 1894, proposed 
a committee consisting of the Jewish, Protestant 
and Catholic bodies to compile a book of Bible selec- 


tions for schools. He Had remarked, several years 
before, tb at any one wbo would prepare such a book, 
that would be acceptable, would win undying" fame. 
He said the book ought not to be large; it should 
be in such compass that the selections could be read 
over and over until they should become memorized. 

"It is unnecessary for us to give a history here of 
the manner in which this suggestion was worked 
out. It is sufficient to say that it has been, and in 
a manner to give universal satisfaction. 

" No criticism can be justly passed upon the little 
book of Bible selections which is now in use in the 
schools of Minneapolis and of other cities. The 
selections meet the approval and commendation of 
the leading clergymen of the great Catholic and 
Protestant churches, and of all the denominations 
of the latter; of the Jewish clergy; of noted secu- 
larists or non-Christians; of eminent moralists, and 
of literary and plain business men, who recognize 
the value of the Scriptures as a beacon of intellect- 
ual light and an inculcator of the basic principles 
which constitute the foundations of our social order. 

*' The book grew out of a recognition of the ur- 
gent need for better and more earnest instruction of 
the rising generation in the fundamental principles 
of morals and religion, which are indispensable to 
the well-being of society. This is a view not con- 
fined to the churches, for Prof. Felix Adler, a non- 
Christian, says in his book, ' Moral Instruction of 
Children,' that ' the narrative of the Bible is fairly 
saturated with the moral spirit; the moral issues 


are evcr3'\vhere in the forefront. Duty, guilt and 
its punishment, the conflict of conscience with incli- 
nation, are the leading- themes.' And Huxle}*, the 
materialist, professed himself seriously perplexed to 
know how the relig-ious feeling-, which is the essen- 
tial basis of conduct, was to be kept up without the 
use of the Bible. 

'' It is a lamentable fact that the active men and 
women of the present generation, the graduates of our 
schools, are for the most part destitute of an ade- 
quate knowledge of the Bible. In fact the igno- 
rance of the majority is palpable and gross. It is 
gratifying to know that this serious defect in edu- 
cation bids fair to be corrected in the rising genera- 
tion, at least in large measure, by the little book, 
* Readings from the Bible,' now under consideration. 

Bishop Hortsman, Cleveland, Ohio, wrote: "I 
have looked over ' Readings from the Bible, Select- 
ed for Schools.' It is admirably adapted for the 
public schools of the country." 

Letters from Archbishop Elder of Cincinnati, and 
Bishop Northrup of South Carolina, commend the 
book. Dr. James M. Gray, Boston, Mass.: "I have 
examined 'Readings from the Bible,' with much 
interest, and regard it as the best publication of 
the kind I have 3'et seen. The literary form is 
especially attractive, particularly the titles. . . . 
I trust the publication may find its way into the 
schools where the Bible cannot go, because it can- 


not but prove to be of great blessing- in everj^ way." 
Rev. Wm. S. Post, Chicag-o: " I have carefully read 
the Bible Selections for schools. In my judg-ment 
they have been prepared by wise and g-ood people, 
who have at heart the honor and welfare of our 
country. ... I would greatly rejoice to have 
these admirable words of wisdom introduced and 
read attentively in all the schools and colleg-es of 
our g-reat and g-rowing- republic." Hon. Geo, W. 
Atkinson, Governor of West Virg-inia: "I have 
received a copy of the little volume published by 
your Union entitled ' Reading-s from the Bible,' 
and have carefully examined it. I beg" to com- 
mend your thoug-htfulness and enterprise in this 
important matter. The Bible, in my judg-ment, 
is the greatest civilizing power of the centuries, 
and the selections you have made from its pages, 
for use in our public schools, cannot fail of good 
results. The arrangement of these Scripture selec- 
tions will prove very helpful to teachers, and im- 
pressive to the students in our schools." 

Thomas B. Stockwell, State Superintendent of 
Schools, Providence, R. I. — "I have looked over the 
book of selections for daily use in the schoolroom, 
and consider them very well adapted to that pur- 
pose. Considering the sources from which the selec- 
tions were gathered, it would not seem that there 


could be an}' just criticism nuide upon the book and 
its use as intended." 

H. R. Corbett, State Superintendent Schools, Lin- 
coln, Neb. — "The State of Nebraska has by its laws 
and the regulations of the Department of Education 
alwa^'s encourag-ed moral culture in its public educa- 
tional system. The Bible is g-enerally read in our 
schools. ... I have examined the book entitled 
'Reading's from the Bible,' and regard it as one of 
the most important educational publications of re- 
cent times. It will certainly facilitate the introduc- 
tion of Scripture Reading- into many schools where 
such exercises have heretofore been impossible." 

Henry R.Patteng-ill, State Superintendent Schools, 
Lansing-, Mich. — "I am very glad to do anything I 
can to assist you in your laudable work. I think 
^-our ' Readings from the Bible ' are very excellent 
indeed. I see no reason why these books should not 
be used in every school." 

Henry Sabin, State Superintendent Public Instruc- 
tion, Des Moines, Iowa. — "The great fault in the 
education of today is undoubtedly the tendency to 
crowd the intellect, and to neglect nearly everj^thing 
which tends toward moral training*. 

"I think the selections, 'Readings from the Bi- 
ble,' are most judiciously chosen, and that the book 
is well adapted to carry out the praiseworthy design. 
I cannot see how it can be objectionable to any one 
who has the welfare of the children at heart." 

Chapter XYl. 

Thk B1BI.K THK Book of Other Nations Hon- 

It is well to remember that our Nation's Book 
belong-ed to and now belong-s to the civilized Na- 
tions of the World — that it is the common book 
of relig-ion and morals throug-hout Christendom. 
Statesmen like Washing-ton, Franklin, Adams, 
Jefferson, and Webster, tell us that Biblical 
thoug-ht is ing-rained into the institutions of the 
United States. And the enlightened educators, 
both of Catholic and Protestant Europe, tell of 
the same use of the Bible in schools in Great 
Britain, France, Prussia, Germany, Belgium, Hol- 
land, Bavaria, Saxony, Austria, Norway, Sweden, 
Switzerland, and Russia, in which last named 
country it is said to be a maxim that "religious 
teaching constitutes the only solid foundation of 
all useful instruction." 

Lyman C. Draper, in his able paper on Moral 
and Religious Instruction in Public Schools, makes 


quotations relating- to the Bible in the schools of 
Europe, from which we copy as follows, M. Guizot, 
Minister Public Instruction in France: 

" Moral and religious instruction is a work of all 
hours and all times. The atmosphere of a school 
ought to be moral and religious, and this is the only 
condition on which you can have moral and religious 
instruction in your schools. Children reach the 
age in which the sciences are to be studied, but in 
primary schools, if 3^ou la}^ not a foundation of mor- 
ality and religion, you build upon the sand. Does 
not the teacher open and close the school with pray- 
er? In teaching the children to read, is it not in 
the Catechism? In teaching them history, is it not 
that of Scripture? In a word, religious instruction 
is mingled with all the proceedings, at all hours, in 
a primary school. Take heed of a fact, which was 
never so brightly apparent as at this day: Intellec- 
tual culture, if accompanied by moral and religious 
culture, produces ideas of order and of submission 
to the laws, and becomes the basis of the greatness 
and prosperity of society. Intellectual culture alone, 
not so accompanied, produces principles of insub- 
ordination and disorder, and endangers the social 

Professor Stowe, in his Report on Elementary In- 
struction in Europe, remarks: "In regard to the 
necessity of moral instruction, and the beneficial in- 
fluence of the Bible in schools, the testimony was 
no less explicit and uniform. I inquired of all classes 
of teachers, and men of every grade of religious 


f ^ith, instructors in common schools, hig-h schools, 
and schools of art, of professors in colleges, univer- 
sities, and professional seminaries, in cities and in 
the country, in places where there was a uniformity, 
and in places where there was a diversity of creeds, 
of believers and unbelievers, of rationalists and en- 
thusiasts, of Catholics and Protestants; and I never 
found but one reply, and that was, that to leave the 
moral faculty uninstructed, was to leave the most 
important part of the human mind undeveloped, 
and to strip education of almost everything- that can 
make education valuable; and that the Bible, inde- 
pendently of the interest attending- it, as containing- 
the most ancient and influential writing-s ever re- 
corded by human hands, and comprising- the relig- 
ious system of almost the whole of the civilized 
world, is in itself the best book that can be put into 
the hands of children, to interest, to exercise, and to 
unfold their intellectual and moral powers. Kvery 
teacher whom I consulted repelled the thought 
that moral instruction is not proper for schools; and 
spurned with contempt the allegation, that the Bi- 
ble cannot be introduced into common schools with- 
out encouraging a sectarian bias in the matter of 
teaching; an indignation and contempt that I be- 
lieve will be fully participated in by every high- 
minded teacher in Christendom." 

Professor Stowe, speaking of the German teacher, 
observes: "Sometimes he calls the class around 
him, and relates to them, in his own language, some 
of the simple narratives of the Bible, or reads it to 


them in the words of the Bible itself, or directs one 
of the children to read it aloud; and then follows a 
friendly, familiar conversation between him and the 
class respecting" the narrative; their little doubts 
are proposed and resolved, their questions put and 
answered, and the teacher unfolds the moral and 
relig-ious instruction to be derived from the lesson, 
and illustrates it by appropriate quotations from 
the didactic and preceptive parts of the Scriptures. 
Sometimes he explains to the class a particular vir- 
tue or vice, a truth or a dut}-; and after having- 
clearl}^ shown what it is, he takes some Bible narra- 
tive which strong-ly illustrates the point in discus- 
sion, reads it to them, and directs their attention to 
it, with special reference to the preceding* narrative." 
"Nothing," said Horace Mann, "receives more 
attention in the Prussian schools than the Bible. 
It is taken up early, and studied systematically. 
The great events recorded in the Scriptures of the 
Old and New Testament; the character and lives of 
those wonderful men, who, from ag-e to ag-e, were 
brought upon the stage of action, and through 
whose agency the future history and destiny of the 
race were to be so much modified; and especially 
those sublime views of duty and of morality which 
are brought to light in the Gospel, these are topics 
of daily and earnest inculcation in every school. 
To these, in some schools, is added the history of 
the Christian religion, in connection with contem- 
porary civil history. So far as the Bible lessons are 
concerned, I can ratify the strong statements made 


by Prof. Stowe, in reg-ard to the absence of sectarian 
instruction or endeavors at proselytism, " 

Lord Broug-ham, in pleading- for a system of na- 
tional education for Kng-land, exclaimed: "Shall 
we, calling- ourselves the friends to human improve- 
ment, balance any long-er upon some party interest, 
some sectarian punctilio, or even some refined scru- 
ple, when the means are within our reach to redeem 
the time, and to do that which is most blessed in 
the sig*ht of God, most beneficial to man? Or shall 
it be said that, between the claims of contending- 
factions in Church or in State, the leg-islature stands 
paralyzed, and puts not forth its hand to save the 
people placed by Providence under its care, lest 
offence be g-iven to some of the knots of theolog-ians 
who bewilder its ears with their noise, as they have 
bewildered their own brains with their controver- 
sies? Lawg-ivers of England! I charg-e ye, have a 
care! Let us hope for better thing's. Let us hope 
it, through His mig"ht and under his blessing who 
commanded the little children to be brought unto 
Him, and that none of the family of mankind should 
be forbidden; of Him who has promised the choicest 
gifts of his Father's kingd(om to those who in good 
earnest love their neighbors as themselves." 

Hon. Thomas Wyse, who was, a few years since, 
a distinguished Roman Catholic member of the Brit- 
ish Parliament, in his work on Education Reform, 
thus expresses himself on this point: '* What is true 
of individuals is still truer of societies. A reading 
and writing community may be a very vicious com- 


munit}^ if morality (not merely its theory, but its 
practice,) be not as much a portion of education as 
readings and writing-. Knowledg-e is only a branch 
of education, but it has too often been taken for the 
'whole.'" '*When I speak of moral education," 
continues Mr. W3'se, "I imply relig'ion; and when 
I speak of relig-ion, I speak of Christianity. It is 
moralit3^ it is conscience par excellence. Even in 
the most worldly sense it could easily be shown that 
no other morality truly binds, no other education so 
effectually secures even the coarse and material in- 
terests of society. The economist himself would 
find his g"ain in such a system. Kven if it did not 
exist he should invent it. It works his most san- 
guine speculations of good into far surer and more 
rapid conclusions than any system he could attempt 
to set up in its place. No system of philosophy has 
better consulted the mechanism of society, or joined 
together with a closer adaptation of all its parts, 
than Christianity. No legislator who is trul}^ wise 
— no Christian will for a moment think — for the in- 
terests of society and religion — which are, indeed, 
only one — of separating Christianity from moral 

Mr. Wyse observes again: "In teaching religion 
and morality we naturally look for the best code of 
both. Where is it to be found? Where, but in the 
Holy Scriptures? Where, but in that speaking and 
vivifying code, teaching by deed, and sealing its 
doctrines by death, are we to find that law of truth, 
of justice, of love, which has been the thirst and 
hunger of the human heart in every vicissitude of 


its history? From the mother to the dig-nitarj this 
ought to be the Book of Books; it should be laid by 
the cradle and the death-bed; it should be the com- 
panion and the counsellor, and the consoler, the 
Urim and Thummim, the light and perfection of all 
earthly existence." 

Hon. J. B. Meilleur, late Superintendent of Edu- 
cation for Lower Canada, thus remarks: "As the 
moral and religious department of education has 
become matter of discussion, and some have pro- 
posed that we should limit our teaching in our 
schools to the ordinary acquirements of science, 
without troubling ourselves with religious educa- 
tion, I consider it my duty to protest in this place 
against the fatal tendency of such a system. The 
aim of education is to render men perfect, and to 
qualify them to fulfill their duties towards God, to- 
wards their families, towards society, and towards 
themselves. Kvery system of education having a 
different object would be subversive of the great 
principles on which society is based, and without 
which a nation could never be strong, or great, or 
prosperous. Every sj^stem of national education 
ought to be, above all, moral and religious, without 
which we could not have a well ordered society." 

That all people may have the ability to read 
and obey the Bible intelligently and lovingly, is 
a prime object sought for by patriots throughout 
Christendom; hence the watchword in them all is 
• — The People's Book in the People's Schools. 

Chapter XVII. 

The Nation's Book in the Nation's Schools. 

School Boards and Educators who, with self- 
denying-, patriotic impartialit}^ seek the best in- 
terests of their pupils, form a mig-hty army, win- 
ning- for our nation brilliant and priceless victories 
of peace, and should receive not only the honor 
accorded to heroes but also the cooperation and 
aid of the patrons of public schools. 

The Bible has been to our educational officers 
teachers and pupils like the decision of an infal- 
lible supreme court, always on the side of reason, 
justice and victory, whenever appealed to for prac- 
tical g-uidance. It is the supreme classic in 
knowledg-e of every sort and the foundation of 
National prosperity, morality and relig-ion. The 
removal of such a power from the schoolroom is 
a blot on modern civilization. But if the Bible 
is to find a congenial atmosphere in the school 
it must be read and appreciated in the home. 
The adult population of our homes, hamlets, vil- 

160 THK nation' book 

lag-es, cities and states, must read it as a whole, 
master it in outline every one, two or more years. 
This thought seems to be afloat. In some local- 
ities Bible reading- is popular. Why should not 
the Sabbath of the whole Nation be devoted to 
Bible reading- and study? Such a custom chang-ed 
the face of England once, and it can make Amer- 
ican moral deserts blossom with lig-ht and love. 
Will the clerg-ymen and their people come to the 
front in this patriotic endeavor? One with whom 
I am acquainted with his camera makes his own 
slides, illustrating- Bible reading- with stereopticon 
views; another, with a larg-e blackboard, a quick, 
well-trained hand, and a thorough knowledge of 
the Word, instructs and delig-hts thousands of the 
learned and the unlearned. All can show their 
love for our Nation's book by reading- it, by select- 
ing- it as a gift in an attractive binding- and print. 
All the ideal in our civilization, so superior to 
preexisting- systems, comes from it. Ingratitude 
toward it is base, is criminal. What can be said 
of one who disowns faithful parents? How great 
stupidity, vanity or sin: but more pitiable is one 
who disowns the Bible, with its marvellous 

Contrast the people of Bible lands (after mak- 
ing- reasonable deductions for their many defi- 

IN THE nation's schools^ 161 

ciencies) with those nations which have not the 
Scriptures. Think of the abiding places, haunts 
unworth}^ of the name of home in Bibleless lands, 
too often filled with discomfort, sickness, misery, 
poverty, deceit, ignorance, violence, and tyrann}^; 
where indulgence in sensuous pleasures, childish 
amusements, and the gratification of carnal appe- 
tites are the base amelioration of the people's woes. 
Witness their parades, the ultimatum of their high- 
est ideals, with gorgeous trappings, fantastic idols 
and effigies, rattles and monotonous music, dances 
and deluded wretches suffering self-inflicted torture. 
Place all this, together with their national inferior- 
ity and helplessness in contrast with the Inventions, 
Commerce, Science, Art, Learning, Political Influ- 
ence, Philanthropy and Religion of Bible Nations, 
and remember that the impetus in every desirable 
activity may be traced to the Bible as its source, 
and a just conception of Bible power appears. 

The Nation's Book; the chief study and guide of 
life; with unflagging interest cherish it. Let these 
pages call to your remembrance its worth. They 
have reviewed many facts concerning it. Pass 
them along, and add others to the number as 
they gOe 

1. The Bible is the Nation's Book. 

2. Reading it in schools does not make school 

162 THK nation's book 

building's places of worship, nor turn teachers 
into ministers of relig-ion. It rather makes them 
true to the highest interests of the civil power 
that employs them. 

3. The question of version surely may be rec- 

4. It contain's the Nation's standard of morals, 
and her most important interests demand its use 
in her schools. 

5o Decisions of Supreme and other courts are 
almost universally favorable to Bible reading in 
schools. Proofs of this are found in the records 
of the Supreme Courts of Maine, Massachusetts, 
Illinois, Iowa, and West Virginia. 

6. Our National Constitution and other State 
papers illustrate the fact that knowledge of the 
Bible is essential to the proper instruction of the 
pupils of public schools in civics. 

7. The degradation of the Bible from the posi- 
tion that it has always held in this country to a 
place on a par with the sacred books of other 
civilizations, would be narrow, discourteous, and 
disloyal to the State's highest interests. While 
our government is wholly separated from any and 
every church establishment, Biblical religion, in 
its broadest fulness, has entered into indissoluble 
and perpetual union with the life of it. 


8. The Bible is entirely' non-sectarian, being- 
interpreted in all its g-enerally accepted versions, 
with a desire to give the correct meaning- of the 

9. Minorities, opposed to Bible reading-, should 
be treated in a courteous, conciliatory manner, 
but they should not oppress conscientious major- 
ities, cind, in opposition to long- established usag-e 
and law, chang-e our g-overnment from a republic, 
in which majorities rule, concerning- Bible read- 
ing- as well as on other subjects, into an aris- 
tocrac}' or despotism. It was for the fullest pro- 
tection of the interests of minorities, as well as 
for the g-ood of majorities, that the book, "Read- 
ing's from the Bible," was so dilig-ently prepared, 
with such care and deliberation, and revised by 
persons looking- at the subject with an especial 
desire to protect the wishes of minorities. 

10. The book, " Readinofs from the Bible," has 
removed from candid critics and objectors, all just 
reason for opposing Bible reading in schools. It 
should occupy a place in them where conditions 
for using portions selected by other methods are 

11. In the light of these facts the exclusion 
from public schools of Bible reading for instruc- 
tion in literature, civics, public and private mor- 

164 THK nation's book 

alitj, and g-ood citizenship, should be prohibited 
by State and National law and usage. 

12. An amendment to our National Constitu- 
tion, for the purpose of more perfectly guarding- 
our civil fabric against the inroads of sectarian- 
ism, should not fail to state explicitly that the 
Bible has the right of way in all public schools, 
and other State and National Institutions. 

13. No land possesses higher ideals of life than 
the United States, and hence none makes more 
strenuous demands of its citizens for high char- 
acter. It charges them not to despise and sell 
their birthright for temporary advantages (messes 
of pottage) even when weary in the greatness of 
the way. Its demand is — Rightkousnkss for 


14. School ofS-cers should be selected not only 
for cleverness in books but also for their positive 
and aggressive ability for lifting pupils to heights 
of patriotic virtue. 

15. Kducators should be encouraged by legisla- 
tive, judicial and executive bodies and officers, 
and by citizens generally, as well as by their love 
for the childrea and their country, to cultivate 
with precision and vigor the education of their 
pupils in morals. 

16. This is to be a constantly recurring duty, 

IN THE nation's schools. 165 

for year b}' 3^ear a new g-eneration comes forward 
for instruction. 

17. All pupils should be taug-bt to memorize 
the words of that crowning- provision of the 3rd 
article of the immortal Ordinance of 1787, and 
often to repeat it. 

18. Catholics, while maintaining- that children 
should be thoroug-hly instructed in the doctrines 
of their church, still reg-ard Bible reading in pub- 
lic schools as far better than its exclusion from 

19. Hebrews and churchless people also join 
with Christians of every name in promoting- the 
moral instruction of children in public schools by 
impressing- upon them the practical teaching-s of 
the Bible relating- to citizenship and scholarship. 

20. The keenest, truest persons, who merit the 
gratitude of the people, have been brought by the 
influence of the Bible to a state of mind that 
could make their great usefulness possible. 

21. Disaster threatens and ultimately overtakes 
communities where the Bible is not loved and 

22. Leaders of thought for centuries past hav^e 
verified these or similar facts. Hence — 

23. The historical, poetical, and pre-eminently 
the practical portions of the Bible, with peren- 

166 o'HK nat^ion's book. 

nial love and patience, should be engraved on tlie 
minds of the children throughout the length and 
breadth of our glorious land. 

Lay State foundations broad and strong-: 

Cement with love and cheer with song-. 

"We're brave to bless, and strong- to rule, 

While the Nation's Book g-uides the Nation's school. 

Most favored of the human race 

Are they who prize this gift of g-race. 

In this glad land the watchword rules — 

Keep the Nation's Book in the Nation's schools. 

Part Second. 

Tributes to the Bible 


Bible Selections for Schools, 

by a few of the 

Leaders of Thought of our Country. 

behold for yourselves. 
" Many and eloquent are the tributes to the Word 
of God by the most prominent people in every 
walk of life. But how impossible in this case is 
exag-g-erated praise. A golden sunset, a calm ex- 
panse of ocean, the cerulean skies, and the more 
transcendent sacred Scriptures, beg-g-ar descrip- 
tion; and the most one can do is to say to inquirers, 
Behold for yourselves. The faculty of sublimity 
in the human soul finds its counterpart in the 
wonders of the natural and supernatural. What 
is needed to induce profound appreciation, even 
in tenderest minds, is wise and patient direction 
in personal experience. Nothing is more impor- 
tant, or more certain to result well, than for a 


faithful parent or a competent teaclier to lead 
growing- minds to an apprehension of the won- 
ders of the Creator's works as outlined in the 
nineteenth Psalm. How utterly defective is the 
training that stops midway in that Psalm! Such 
an education is top-heavy, being a recognition of 
the great without while the deep within is ignored. 
The Bible is the one and only guide Book for the 
soul, and its restoration to the rightful place at the 
head of all other books, whether educational or de- 
votional, will mark another era worthy of the spirit- 
ual intelligences which throng our schoolrooms," 

Chicago, 111. 


"The Bible needs no external proof of its divine 
character and authority. It is its own best inter- 
preter, and proves its authenticity by its matchless 
influence on human hearts. It is not only the great 
Book of Religion and Morals, but it is at the same 
time the richest literary heritage of all ages." 

Originator and President of the World's Congresses, 
Columbian Exposition. 

"I fully endorse the opinion of Mr. C. C. Bonney 

regarding the Bible." 


Late President International Congress of Physi- 
cians, Dean of Faculty N. W. University Medical 



Cardinai^'s Residence, 
Bai^TimorE, Md., May 23, '98. 

**In reply to your letter of May 18, the Cardinal 
beg-s to say that there is an article on Bible Study 
in his latest book 'The Ambassador of Christ,' 
which you are free to make use of." 

WM. T. RUSSELL, Sec'y. 

**The Word of God is an inexhaustible treasury 
of heavenl}^ science. It is the only oracle that dis- 
closes to us the origin and sublime destiny of man, 
and the means of attaining it. It is the key that 
interprets his relations to his Creator. It is the 
foundation of our Christian faith and of our glori- 
ous heritage. Its moral code is the standard of our 
lives. . . . 

'* Viewed as an historical chronicle it is the most 
ancient, the most authentic, the most instructive 
and interesting record ever presented to mankind. 
It contains the only reliable history of the human 
race before the Deluge, embracing a period of more 
than fifteen hundred years. . . . The Deca- 
logue is seven hundred years older than the juris- 
prudence of Lycurgus, two thousand years older 
than that of Justinian, twenty-seven hundred years 
older than the Magna Charta, thirty-three hundred 
years older than the Code Napoleon, and almost as 
many years older than the American Constitution; 
and yet the Decalogue is better known today and 
more generally inculcated than any laws ever framed 
by the hand of man. 


"It is an historical monument that has remained 
impregnable for thousands of years, and has suc- 
cessfully withstood the violent shocks of the most 
formidable assailants. There is not a single arch 
or column or keystone in the sacred edifice that does 
not show some marks of a foreign or domestic as- 
sault. But there it stands as firm as the Pyramids, 
unshaken and unriven by the upheavals and revolu- 
tions of centuries. 

*' There is scarcely a notable incident recorded 
in Scripture that may not serve as a text for some 
moral reflection. . . . There is not a single 
virtue that is not embelished by the luminous exam- 
ple of some patriarch or prophet, or apostle, or king, 
or matron, in the sacred book. . . . While those 
great luminaries shine forth like stars in the firma- 
ment, guiding the wayfarer in the path of rectitude, 
the lives of others recorded in Holy Writ, who had 
fallen from their high estate, serve as beacon lights, 
warning us to shun the rocks which occasioned 
their destruction. 

*' They who have read the speeches of the leading 
English and American statesmen and orators can- 
not fail to observe what frequent use some of them 
have made of Scriptural passages. Biblical parables 
and historical allusions, allegories, precepts, max- 
ims, and other striking phrases from the Old and 
the New Testament were freely employed to illus- 
trate and adorn their discourses. The Earl of Chat- 
ham and Eord Brougham, Patrick Henry and Dan- 
iel Webster were indebted for their richest thoughts 


to the pages of Holy Writ. In a single speech of 
Webster, I counted over a dozen references to the 
Word of God. One of his finest perorations is a para- 
phrase of the one hundred and thirty-eighth Psalm.* 
. . . Dr. Johnson once read to some friends in 
London a manuscript copy of a pastoral stor}^ They 
were delighted with the narrative, and desired to 
know the author's name. Imagine their surprise 
when he informed them that it was an ancient doc- 
ument written 2,500 years before the discovery of 
America; in fact that it was no other than the book 
of Ruth. Had it been composed by an English 
author of note selections from it would have found 
a place in our choice elassical literature. But the 
Bible should be read from a higher motive than for 
the sake of its style. . . . 

"The Ark of the Covenant was carried by the 
Hebrew people with great reverence because it con- 
tained the tables of the law, a portion of the manna, 
and other emblems of God's mercy. With what awe 
and devotion should we not handle the ark of the 
Bible, containing the commandments and the spirit- 
ual manna of the Gospel, which have nourished 
millions of souls for centuries." — From "The Am- 
bassador of Christ," by James Cardinal Gibbons. 


"The Bible is the fountain and source of all the 
real civilization on the globe. There is no liberty, 
no security, no intelligence, no purity, no humanity 

* 139th according to the Hebrew verBion. 

172 TRiBui^ES TO the: biblk and to 

where it is unknown. The music, art and oratory 
of the world have their hig-hest inspiration in the 
Word of God. The proposition to banish it from 
education is a motion to return to pag-anism." 

President, Wheaton Colleg-e. 


"It is not difficult to see that there must be an 
accumulation of g-reat good to the Nation in setting 
the Bible ideals before all the„-Nation's youth in all 
the years of their immaturity." 


President, Iowa College. 


Office of State Schooi. Commissioner, 

Ati^anta, Ga., May 16, 1898. 

*'I very heartily approve of the interest that the 
good women of America are taking in the cause of 
public education. . . . 

*' The women of this country have a right to de- 
mand that the Word of God shall be used as a text 
book in the schools where their children are trained. 
If this is to be a Christian nation we must embody 
the life of Christ in the life of the Nation while the 
children are at schools. I am glad to say to you 
that in Georgia we have put a law upon our statute 
books, which says, The Bible shall not be excluded 
from any one of our schools. In nine-tenths of the 
schools of this State, we have some kind of religious 


observance every day, and in man}- of our schools 
the Bible is used as a text book." 

G. R. GlvENN, 
State School Commissioner. 

Religious Education should Beg-in with the 
First Steps and Proceed with the March of Years. 

Episcopai. Residence, 114 Broad St., 

CHAR1.EST0N, S. C, 7th Dec, 1897. 

*'Of course I very g"ladly subscribe to what His 
Eminence and Archbishop Keane have written with 
reg-ard to The Reading's from the Bible for schools. 

*'On the principle of "half a loaf being- better 
than no bread," I appreciate the fact that this is a 
step in the right direction, though a very short step 
in the path of religious education, which should be- 
g-in with the first steps of childhood and proceed 
with the march of years to the end of the long- 

"I certainl}^ think such a presentation of Bible 
truths and lessons far preferable to opening- the 
whole book to the eager eyes and unformed intellect 
of youth. Histories of the Old Testament, written 
indeed 'for our instruction,' should, like any other 
lesson, be taug-ht by a prudent teacher, and not the 
' naked truth ' be offered to the impressionable pal- 
ates of children; and the warning of St. Peter oug-ht 
to awe even the learned in approaching the profound 
mysteries enveloped in imperfect human words." 

Bishop H. P. NORTHROP. 



May 16, 1898. 

** Moral instruction in the schoolroom should be 
emphasized each school day by every teacher in the 
land. Mental without moral development is one- 
sided, and if made exclusive only prepares the evil- 
minded for g-reater mischief. Moral restraints and 
moral instruction are imperative necessities for the 
full and proper development of the youthful mind 
and heart, and the proper use of the Bible is the 
best means to secure such development." 

State Supt. Education, Columbia, South Carolina. 


''From an educational point of view the Bible 
has done more to mold the human race than all 
other books combined. In view of the light which 
its pag-es shed upon the best literature of the Eng- 
lish languag-e, upon the deepest problems of human 
existence and human destiny, and upon everything- 
that pertains to hig-her life, it richly deserves to be 
called the Book of books." 


State Supt. Public Instruction, Harrisburg-, Pa. 


May 20, 1898. 

"I reg"ret g-reatly the ig-norance which g-enerally 
prevails concerning- the Bible, and sympathize with 
all efforts to make it better known, but I wish the 
Bible to be studied rather than read, and to have it 
studied under the guidance and supervision of gen- 


uine Bible scholars, men who in this countr}^ are 
represented by President W. R. Harper of the Chi- 
cago University, Prof. Paul Haupt of Johns Hop- 
kins University, and a g-reat number of Europeans — 
Kuen, Wellhausen, Cornill, and other scholars not 
less known in the scientific world." 


Editor of The Monist and The Open Court. 


May 25, 1898. 

*'The Bible is not simply a thesaurus of charm- 
ing- alleg-ories, of beautiful poetry, of realistic de- 
scriptions, of reliable history, of wonderful truths 
and marvelous prophecies, but it is the g-reatest and 
grandest revelation of human life and destiny. Fur- 
thermore, all laws that protect, all charity that 
blesses, all morals that preserve, all relig"ion that 
sanctifies, emanate from and depend upon this sov- 
ereign Book. It is the inspiration of all good liter- 
ture, the enunciation of the principles of all good 
government, the most potent factor in all good civ- 
ilization, and the bedrock of all good society; hence 
it challenges our consideration, study and devotion. 
May its imperial and regenerating power pervade 
the Nation's schools." 


State Supt. Public Instruction, Montpelier, Vt. 


June 3, 1898. 

" Your Selections from the great Hebrew and 


Christian classics, in which alone of all the writing-s 

of antiquity there was presented a true idea of God 

and Duty, have been made with excellent judgment, 

and can be heartily commended to the teachers of 

the country." 


Supt. Public Schools, Philadelphia^ Pa. 


June 4, 1898. 

*' The selections published under the title, 'Read- 
ing's from the Bible, Selected for Schools,' are of 
such a character that no one could raise any valid 
objection to them or to the teaching-s therein con- 
tained. Many of the selections represent the hig-h- 
est type of literature, and inculcate teaching's which 
are an essential part of school instruction." 

A. G. IvANE, 
Supt. of Schools, Chicag-o, 111. 


June 2, 1898. 
"The Bible is the best example of pure Kng-lish 
in our literature. It should be read to children every 
day and read by them. Its style should be studied, 
its phraseology should become familiar to the young-, 
and they will be influenced all their lives by this 
greatest of books, both in their speech and in their 

Supt. Public Schools, Raleig-h, N. C. 



May 23, 1898. 
*' I have read carefull}^ 3'our compilation of ' Rcad- 
ing-s from the Bible, Selected for Schools.' The 
names of the * Editorial Committee,' under whose 
approval the book is issued, g-ives one an assurance 
in advance, which the selections full}^ justif}^ name- 
ly, that sectional and denominational differences 
have been so well cons>. jred as to leave little or no 
room for criticism from the sectarian stand-point. 
It is mj deep conviction that this book, or one simi- 
lar, carrying- in it the uplifting- power of the Sacred 
Scriptures in their influence upon the mind and 
heart of man, should be adopted in our public 



Secretary of the Treasurj^, U. S. A., Washing^ton, 
D. C. 

a lasting influence. 
Executive Office, Salem, Oregon, 

May 28, 1898. 
*'I have examined your Readings from the Bible 
with much interest and pleasure. I regard it as a 
book of much merit and excellent purpose. Its 
selections are elevated in sentiment, weig-hty and 
admirable in substance, of marked purity of diction, 
and of g-reat literary excellence. Nor is there any- 
thing- in them to offend the religious sensibilities 
of the most fastidious churchman or dogmatist. I 
assure you that I approve of the purpose of your 
* Readings,' and believe that they will exert a whole- 


some and lasting- influence in favor of morality and 

WM. P. I.ORD, 

Governor of Oregon, 


May 17, 1898. 

"lam in receipt of 'Readings from the Bible, 
Selected for Schools,' and am v^ell pleased with it. 
Its selections are good and suited to the minds of 
children, and do away v^ith some objections that 
some people have to the reading of the Bible in our 
Public Schools. . . . 

"I am heartily in favor of placing the Bible in 
our Public Schools — the whole Bible, for several 
considerations: first, it is the best literature in any 
language. . . . And then the Bible covers the 
ground of ancient history covered by no other book 
in the world. If we are to teach perfectly A ncient 
History the history of the Bible must be taught. 
But above all these reasons, high as Mt. Blanc is 
above the sea, is the morality taught in the Bible. 
. . . We cannot develop a perfectly rounded-out 
educated child without teaching the Bible. Let us 
have the Bible — the whole Bible — in our schools as 
well as in our homes and in our hearts." 

State Supt. Public Instruction, Boise City, Idaho. 


"During many years of labor in public as well as 
in mission schools I have made constant use of care- 


fully selected Bible texts in shaping- the lives and 

awakening- the consciences of the pupils under my 

care. I have thus witnessed transformations that 

have made my heart glad. I welcome most heartily 

any effort that has for its object the mag-nifying- of 

the Word of God." 


Formerly of the New West Education Commission. 


July, 1897. 

" If the State has the rig-ht to provide self educa- 
tion it has the right to provide all the elements 
necessary to train the children in justice, mercy, 
purity, goodness, faith, hope and love. . . . 

*' We have agreed that we may learn something 
of the language and literature and history of every 
other people, but we must learn nothing of the lan- 
guage of the literature and history of the Hebrew 
people. We may study the laws of Solon, but we 
must not study the laws of Moses. All other litera- 
ture, all other history, all other laws your teachers 
may use, but not the history of the institutions and 
laws and literature which come most closely home 
to us. It is true that these laws concern us more 
than the laws of the Greeks and Romans; it is true 
that this race instituted popular suffrage; that it 
was the first race that maintained no standing army; 
that it was the first to make provision for the edu- 
cation of all the people; that it was the first to form 
separate states into one nation; and to whose schools 


we can trace ours, as jou can trace the oak to the 

acorn. " 

From Address before Nat'l Kducation Association. 


Nov. 12, 1897. 

* 'Although the Bible is the source of religious in- 
struction and inspiration for great numbers of peo- 
ple, the reading of the Bible in public schools is not 
to be regarded as an act of public religious worship. 
For, under our form of government, it is no part of 
the State's function to maintain religious worship 
or to give religious instruction. But it is a part of 
the State's function to promote moral instruction; 
and this our own Commonwealth has chosen to do, 
in some measure, by requiring the reading of the 
Bible in all public schools. Evidently, therefore, 
teachers, in making their selection of Scripture to 
be read, should carefully avoid passages which 
might draw into discussion the tenets of any partic- 
ular religious sect or denomination. With proper 
care on this point, the so-called religious difficulty 
need never arise. 

*'The lesson from Scripture can often be rein- 
forced by selected passages of poetry or prose from 
other books, read or recited by the teacher or by the 
pupils. And singing can be used to the same end. 
If each day's work can begin with thoughts and 
feelings raised towards the higher modes of expres- 
sion through the influences of the morning exercise, 
the whole life of the school and the total effoit of 


the teacher will be crowned with the richest fruit- 
ag'e."-From "Our School Work," by Edwin P. 
Seaver, Supt. Public Schools, Boston, Mass. 


May 10, 1898. 

"Mature reflection, covering- many years, has 
caused me to conclude that the most powerful factor 
in the civilization of the world is the Holy Bible. 
Its teaching's have made human life happier and 
longer and better. It has broadened the outlook 
and bettered the life of every person who has g-auged 
his or her conduct by its precepts. It has pulled 
the arrogant and bigoted individual downward, and 
lifted the humble and lowly upward. It has over- 
thrown despotism, has broken the chains of slavery, 
and has sapped the very foundations of tyranny and 
oppression. No other influence has so touched man- 
kind on every side, and has so effectively lifted the 
world to higher heig-hts of intelligence and useful- 
ness as the inspired Word of Almighty God. It 
therefore seems to me that he who attempts to rule 
the Bible out of our schools is an enemy to his own 
soul as well as to his fellow man — especially if it is 
not used in a doctrinal, sectarian or denominational 
sense by the teachers of the public schools. No 
teacher should be allowed to do more than simply 
read the Bible to his or her pupils without note or 
comment, and to this no one, in my judg-ment, ought 
to object. 

"Believing- as I do that there is no other book so 
potent for good among all classes and nations and 

182 Tributes to thk BiBt.E: and to 

peoples as the Word of God, I commend it as a text 
book in all schools, colleges and universities in this 
and all lands, and earnestly and heartily indorse the 
course that you have taken in the work that you are 
doing- to make the world better and broader and no- 
bler and g-rander." 


Governor, West Virg-inia. 


Hon. Simon Greenleaf, Law Professor in Cam- 
bridg-e University, Massachusetts: 

'' Our republican institutions have been the admi- 
ration of intellig-ent men of all nations, both for the 
profound wisdom exhibited in their construction, 
and for the success with which they have been ad- 
ministered. But it should never be forg-otten, that 
those foundations were laid by men trained with the 
Bible in their hands, as their household book and 
the book of their common schools, and early taught 
to hold its precepts in deep reverence as the rule of 
their conduct in after life. This made them what 
they were, and led our nation to its present heig-ht 
of prosperity and renown. 

"I am deeply convinced that the continuance of 
these blessing-s, and the happiness of the people, 
will depend mainly on the deg^ree in which the Holy 
Scriptures are familiarly studied and known, and 
held in reverence by each member of the community. 
The distribution therefore of the Bible, and its in- 
troduction into all the schools, belong-s to the hig-h- 
est class of patriotic duties." 



*' We do not know the Bible well enough. . . . 
If the words of our favorite poets are of so great an 
educational as well as moral value, how infinitely 
greater the influence upon our lives of the * Divine 
Word ' were it really in our possession." 

Chairman, Educational Department, Catholic Wom- 
an's National League. 


*' Today the land of Bibles is the home of science 
and the foster parent of art. It is the birthplace of 
pure patriotism and the refuge of the oppressed. 
* Thou shalt love the Lord thy God and thy neigh- 
bor as thyself.' This one simple sentence is a grand 
compendium of both law and morals. All the vol- 
umes of jurisprudence that man has compiled sink 
into insignificance before it." 

Mrs. ELIZABETH A. REED, A. M., L. H. D., 
Member of the Royal Asiatic Society, Author of 
Hindu and Persian Literature, Primitive Budd- 
hism, etc., etc. 


June 9, 1898. 

"A Book which contains the Gospel of John, 
which Schaff called * the most important literary 
production ev^er written b}' man;' a Book which has 


g-iven to mankind all the pure and strong- and vig-or- 
ous monotheism now prevailing- in our race, among- 
nations as diverse as those who dwell in Scotland 
and those who dwell in Arabia; a Book whose 
prolong-ed history was a manifest prophecy of the 
Messiah, culminating in the matchless person and 
teachings of Jesus Christ, and through whose record 
there runs by the side of human sin the current of 
divine redemption; a Book which opens with crea- 
tion's stor}^, written long before the birth of science, 
and conformed to that theory of development from 
the simple to the complex, and from the lower to 
the higher, which science now wears as its most 
lustrous crown; a Book which deals with those 
stories of the earth's origin and of the earth's de- 
struction by a deluge in such a way as to demon- 
strate its moral superiority above the other traditions 
and accounts which have been left to us; a Book 
which has furnished in its Psalms, written more 
than two thousand years ago, the one devotional 
volume most acceptable to the enlig-htened nations 
of toda}^ — those Psalms on which John Brig-ht de- 
clared he would be content to stake the question 
whether there is or there is not a Divine revelation; 
a Book which has furnished mankind the authority 
for that Sabbath of rest, without which civilization 
would rapidly sink into phj^sical decay and moral 
barbarism; a Book which through its flaming- insist- 
ence on righteousness, its doctrine of retribution, its 
disclosures of the Christ, and its opposition to the 
degrading and downward tendencies of sin; a Book 
which by its influence is lifting- great portions of our 


race into a better manhood, and which carries on 
the forefront of its Gospel the priceless truth of im- 
mortalit}', making- our earth, in spite of its sorrows 
and transgressions, the suburb and gateway of celes- 
tial life — shines so pre-eminently that many Chris- 
tians feel disinclined to bring it into comparison with 
other sacred writings. 

"Robertson Smith has said, 'We have no need 
to g^o outside of the Bible history to learn anything- 
of God and His saving- will toward us.' Because 
the Bible alone is sufficient, it seems to us that it 
will ultimately supplant other sacred literatures. 
Unlike them it is unified by a divine purpose, a his- 
toric continuity running through it all. The vari- 
ous books in the librarj^ of our Scriptures are held 
into oneness b}^ the prophetic character of the older 
volumes and the historic consummations of the lat- 
ter. Or we may find the unity of the Scriptures in 
the progressive ethical development which culmi- 
nates in Jesus Christ. Or we may say that the 
Bible is unified by the revelation of the king-dom of 
God which runs through its pages. Or, looking- at 
the Scriptures as a history of redemption, we may 
say that Christ is the unifying- principle of this 
multiple volume, and that from Abel's altar to the 
coronation of the Lamb there is a gradual and glo- 
rious progress of redemptive disclosure. 

We may find in it the truths which are cherished by 
all earth's sages and saints — the best which Socrates 
and Seneca gave to Greek and Roman, and every 
higher principle and precept of the Koran, and all 
that is true in every cherished writing of Indian 


philosopher and poet and moralist; but far more 
than this it is disting-uished from other literature, 
as one has written, ' Because the noble truths which 
exist everywhere as scattered fragments are here to 
be found purified and centralized, even as the silver 
from the earth is tried and purified seven times in 
the fire.' The doctrines which the human mind and 
heart have guessed at, and it may be, involved in 
much of error, are found in the Scriptures freed from 
all weakness and defilement. The Biblical teach- 
ings in regard to God and immortality, incarnation 
and the atonement, bear the brig-htness of celestial 

"What a wondrous ennobling power this Book 
has had over all willing to receive iti What we call 
Puritanism was one of the greatest efforts ever 
made to get the Bible enshrined into social law and 
national habits, and to it are due the liberty and 
purity of Knglish-speaking nations. Kven conserv- 
ative Oxford, from her chair of history, has said 
that England's progress for two hundred years, on 
its moral and spiritual side, was due to Puritanism. 
The idolatrous Malagasy gets the Bible into his 
heart, and suffers death by torture rather than sur- 
render it or his faith in it. Professor Drummond 
goes to Africa, and finds illustrations of Christian 
character among newly-converted believers in God's 
Word which appear to him among the finest in the 
world. A native preacher, holding up a copy of the 
Scriptures before some of the Christian inhabitants 
of the South Sea Islands, exclaims, 'This is my 
resolve: the dust shall never cover my Bible, the 


moth shall never eat it, the mildew shall never rot 
it — mj light and my joy!' And late in his life the 
all-accomplished poet and philosopher, Coleridge, 
who had ranged so widely through literature, with- 
drew from his usual studies, and took with him in 
his travels only a small English New Testament, 
saying to his friends, ' I have only one Book, and 
that is the best.' 

"But we may believe with Ewald, that 'in the 
New Testament is all the wisdom of the world,' 
and with Sir William Jones that * in the Bible 
are more true sublimity, more exquisite beauty, 
more pure morality, more important history, and 
finer strains of poetry and eloquence than can be 
collected from all other books, in whatever age or 
language they ma}' have been written,' and yet not 
discover that the chief secret of the Bible is not 
truth so much as life, or rather life through the 
medium of truth. It appears to possess or to be 
accompanied by a divine energy working unpar- 
alleled miracles. Even sceptics are impressed by 
it. One who sees no difference worth mentioning 
between the theology of Christ and the theology 
of Mohammed, wrote not long since in the Fort- 
nigh tlj^ Review: ' Look at what Christian mission- 
aries have done in the Pacific Islands, New Guinea, 
and Madagascar. In that latter island British 
evangelists reall}' fought out the battle of civiliza- 
tion without costing a penny or a drop of blood to 
any European government. The same work is in 
its inception in the center of Africa. Who first put 
steamers on Lakes Tanganyika and Nyassa? Who 


first explored the g-reat affluents of the Congo? 
A little steamer of the Baptist Mission Society.' 
This materialist has no sympathy with the mo- 
tive forces which are back of Christian missions, 
but as a political economist he is glad in the inter- 
ests of education and civilization to encourage the 
work of a Biblical Christianity. ' China and Japan 
may send delegations to America to study our ways 
and take back the force of our institutions and mod- 
els of our industries, but one missionary will do 
more to start the living currents of civilization than 
all the delegations, simply because he begins further 
back in his teachings, and awakens conscience and 
the sense of selfhood and the dignity of human na- 
ture. He goes to a nation with the Bible in his 
hand, a simple and pathetic figure, less than a drop 
in the ocean, but he siiiks in the depths only to re- 
appear in some other form — the Bible has grown 
into a charter of freedom and of true national life. 
He seems to be doing little, but like the Norse god, 
who drained his drinking horn, and lol the sea was 
narrowed, he often finds himself in the midst of 
results miraculous and great.' Always and every- 
where the Bible brings life; its principles, which 
are universal, touch the springs of love and hope 
and fear, and are in the greatest contrast with any 
system which ' fills the whole course of life with 
punctilious minutiae of observances.' " 

Chairman Parliament of Religions, World's Colum- 
bian Exposition. 



20 May, 1898. 

"To the Christian the Bible is precious as con- 
taining the history of his religion; the biography 
of his Saviour; the revelation of that redemption 
on which he rests his hopes of pardon and immor- 
tality; and as being his infallible guide of faith 
and life. 

"To the moralist it is precious as setting forth 
the highest ethical standard that the world has ever 

" To the patriot it is precious as the fundamental 
charter of human rights; as laying down those prin- 
ciples that have resulted in government by laws 
instead of by personal will, in the largest freedom 
of each consistent with the good of all, and in the 
complete separation of church and state. 

"To the humanitarian it is precious as giving 
him both the rule and the inspiration of his life — 
both the incentive and the ability to do unto others 
as he would have them do unto him. 

*'To the literator it is precious as containing 
the finest specimens of exalted poetry and of elo- 
quent prose to be found in the entire range of 
human thought embodied in human speech. 

' ' To the artist it is precious as affording the no- 
blest subjects, whether for brush or chisel, as every 
great gallery of the world abundantly testifies. 

"To the educator it is precious for it reveals to 
him the high destiny of the immortal spirits with 
whom he deals, and elevates his work from the hard 

190 tribute:s to thk bibi.k and to 

drudg-ery of a daily routine into an essentially di- 
vine ministry. 

" To the laborer on farm or in mine or in factory 
it is precious as leading- him into paths of industry, 
sobriety and thrift, and showing- him how to be 
content even in narrow circumstances. 

" To the employer of labor, the capitalist, manu- 
facturer, merchant, banker, it is precious as teaching- 
his responsibility of stewardship, and how to dis- 
charg-e it to the satisfaction of his conscience and 
the good of his fellow men. 

"To the husband and father it is precious as hav- 
ing given him wife and children, not as slaves or 
playthings, but as equals and companions. 

"To woman it is precious as having disclosed her 
full equality with man, given her civil rights, open- 
ed before her innumerable avenues of industry, use- 
fulness and distinction, while preserving intact her 
unique and incomparable sphere of motherhood. 

"To the children it is precious for it may be said 
to have as truly discovered them as Columbus dis- 
covered America — bringing to light their rights, 
defining their duties, revealing their infinite possi- 
bilities of loving and being loved. 

" To even the dumb animals it is precious — how 
one longs to have them know the fact! — for through 
its gentle ministry even they are coming into their 
rights, and shall yet be treated with the kindness 
due to all God's creatures. 

"To the whole creation, groaning and travailing 
together in pain until 'now,' the Bible is precious 
as at once the promise and the means of ultimate 


redemption from sin and peiin and death into im- 
mortal peace, freedom and joy. 

Rev. tennis S. HAMLIN, D.D., 
Pastor, Church of the Covenant, Washing-ton, D. C. 


'*As the rain cometh down, and the snow from 

And returneth not thither but watereth the earth, 

And maketh it bring forth and bud. 

That it may give seed to the sower and bread to 
the eater: 

So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my 

It shall not return unto me void, but it shall ac- 
complish that which I please. 

And it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent 
it." Holy Bible. 

Readinas trom tli6 BiDle Selected for SgHooIs. 

Edited by Hon. W. J. Onahan. Member of Jury Commission Chicago; Dr, John Henry Barrows, 
Chairman of the World's Fair Parliament of religions, Hon. C. C. Sonney, President of Congresses 
of tlie Columbian Exposition, and Mrs. E. B. Cook, President.Chicago Woman's Educational Union, 
comprising selections made by ten clergymen Viz. J. Cardinal Gibbons, 
Prof. Herrick Johnson. Dr. Josiah Strong Dr. Theodore T. Wright. Prest. 
Charles A. Blanchard, Dr. Theodore N, Morrison, Dr. Thomas C. iSall, Dr. H. 
W.Thomas, Dr. F. W.Gunsaulus, Dr. J.Henry Barrows, assisted also by Dr. M. 
M. Mangasarian, Prof. Kichard G. Moulton a prominent Hebrew Rabbi and 

150 Selections, large clear type, cloth bound Price 25cts. Post-paid 30cts. 
Send orders to 

Chicago Woman's Educational Union, 3l6 Washington Boulevard, Chicago, 111. 

What the Wise think of it. 
"A happy thought well carried out." O. Stanley Hall. 
" It should be found in every home." Bishop Samuel Fall jWS. 
"It is a blessed book and one that I shall keep on my table for light and 
leading."' Frances E. WiUard. 

Dr. D'Ooge,-JJnw., of Mich., Ann Arbor, Mich — 
" I hope the little book will be generally used, for it seems to be a most 
judicious collection. 

The Atlantic Monthly so,ys: 
The book is a step in the right direction, and Mr. Moulton's suggestions 
as to literary form have been of excellent service. 
The Indianapolis News says : 
The seletions have been made with excellent judgnent and taste. 

The Catholic Standard and Times, Philadelphia, says: 
Choice has been made of passages that offend no religious sensibility, and 
that are among the best specimens of purity of diction. 
The Catholic Telegraph, Cincinnati, says; 
This book is a compilation of Scriptural verses embodying the highest 
moral percepts free from any suggestions of dogma or creed. 
The Atlanta. Journal sa^ys : 
This little book, if generally adopted in the schools of America, will prove 
one of the crowning blessings of the century. 
The Literary World. Boston, says: 
It is difficult to see how anybody, Christian or pagan, can object to the use 
of such a volume as a reader in the public schools. 

The Nation's Book in the Nation's Schools. 



By Elizabeth B. Cook, President, 
Chicago Woman's Educational Union. 

A thousand Educators by their reports and words of wis- 
dom have g-iven g-reat value to this book. Kminent per- 
sons have enriched it with their wisdom. 

Clerg-ymen, Educators, Philanthropists and people every- 
where should read it. Paper 50. cts.Oloth 75 cts. post-paid. 


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